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👋 Good morning all, and happy Friday! I’m currently enjoying the second six-hour unscheduled power outage in the past 24 hours. I trust your day is going much better!
Microsoft is the new Google
The generative AI era has sprung a few surprises. No one would’ve believed that ChatGPT and GPT-4 would take off the way they have. It seems that Google has also been taken aback. In our feature article today, my colleague Hadlee Simons argues that Microsoft has now taken Google’s place as the cool company, bursting with promise and ideas.
- This is a massive flip from a few months ago.
- Let us not forget Microsoft is responsible for uncool properties like Bing, Internet Explorer, and Windows.
- However, since it put its weight behind OpenAI’s ChatGPT project, Microsoft has seemingly reclaimed some street cred from Google.
From stuffy to trendy
- Google itself tried to call Microsoft’s launch of Bing Chat with Bard. The latter had more than a disappointing demo, thanks to a glaring error.
- It would take another six weeks for Google to announce a Bard beta program.
- Usually, Microsoft is the slow mover in the tech space.
- “That’s not to say every Microsoft AI endeavor is a hit, as the Image Creator, in particular, is based on DALL-E and struggling a bit behind rival efforts such as MidJourney,” writes Hadlee.
- However, he notes that Microsoft now seems to be unafraid of moving too quickly and breaking things.
- Google, meanwhile, continues to limit its Bard beta program to a few countries, extinguishing any excitement he may have had for the launch.
Trailing as an advantage
- Interestingly, Microsoft’s position in the market may have aided its new philosophy.
- “Bing is in a very distant second place, the Cortana assistant died a slow death, and the company’s mobile devices have been unpolished messes as usual.”
- However, spotting a gap in the market has allowed Microsoft to act with more abandon to overtake Google in the segment.
- Not reacting could see it fall further behind.
- Additionally, Google’s top-dog status across search, virtual assistants, and mobile operating systems mean it has more to lose with generative AI.
- “Rush ahead with a response, and, well, you seemingly get that poor initial Bard demo.”
The more you look at the burgeoning generative AI field, the more it feels like Microsoft is the Google of the 2000s. Do you agree? Tell us what you think here.
📹 Google Photos update brings new movie editor feature to Chromebooks (Android Authority).
🔒 Facebook is finally letting users opt out of tracking, but there’s a catch (Android Authority).
🍎 Apple has reportedly delayed the launch of its mixed-reality headset: The company is worried that the device won’t create an “iPhone moment” (Android Authority).
🕹️ Also in gaming: My quest to re-create Street Fighter’s long-lost pneumatic controls (Ars Technica).
🧾 I played the anime dating sim that does your taxes for you: Apparently, it works pretty well (TechCrunch).
👩🔬 What scientific fact scares the hell out of you? Reddit weighs in (r/askreddit).
🤡 Tomorrow is April Fools’ Day, which most of us probably dread. We have no idea why we mark this date on the calendar to dish out practical jokes, but one of my favorite Wikipedia pages is the list of pranks throughout the years.
- Reportedly, a group of students in the 1950s sick of poor service delivery in Sao Paulo somehow elected a rhino to the city council. Unfortunately, she was disqualified.
- A decade later, the Swedish channel SVT duped people into placing nylon stockings over their monochrome TVs to get a full-color picture.
- In the 1980s, a hoax claimed that Great Blue Hill, Norfolk County, was erupting. The fake news bulletin sent shockwaves (of panic) through the nearby area. It also got the executive producer of the news at the time fired. Rightly so.
- Back when Twitter was still a relatively wholesome social network, National Geographic tweeted that they would no longer post images of naked animals.
- Finally, remember when Google Nose was a thing? Back in 2013, the company “launched” a “new scentsation” for people who really love the smell of wet dog, horse manure, and locker rooms. See the promo video above.
Remember, prank responsibly!
Have a great weekend,
Andy Walker, Editor