Microsoft-Backed OpenAI Releases GPT-4, Calls Latest AI Model ‘Multimodal’

OpenAI, the creator of chatbot sensation ChatGPT, on Tuesday said it is beginning to release a powerful artificial intelligence model known as GPT-4, setting the stage for even more human-like technology to proliferate.

The startup, funded by Microsoft, said in a blog post that its latest technology is “multimodal”, meaning images as well as text prompts can spur it to generate content. The text-input features will first be available to ChatGPT Plus subscribers and to software developers, with a waitlist, while the image-input ability remains a preview of its research.

The highly-anticipated launch signals how office workers may turn to ever-improving AI for still-more tasks, as well as how technology companies are locked in competition to win business from such advances. Alphabet‘s Google on Tuesday announced a “magic wand” for its collaboration software that can draft virtually any document, days before Microsoft is expected to showcase AI for its competing Word processor that’s likely powered by OpenAI.

The startup’s latest technology in some cases represented a vast improvement on its prior version known as GPT-3.5, it said. In a simulation of the bar exam required of US law-school graduates before professional practice, the new model scored around the top 10 percent of test takers, versus the older model ranking around the bottom 10 percent, OpenAI said.

While the two versions can appear similar in casual conversation, “the difference comes out when the complexity of the task reaches a sufficient threshold,” OpenAI said, noting “GPT-4 is more reliable, creative, and able to handle much more nuanced instructions.”

© Thomson Reuters 2023

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