Google Execs Confirm A.I. Tool Isn’t Just For Searches

Google executives are still grappling with the aftermath of the mishandled announcement of their new artificial intelligence engine, Bard, which has caused confusion among employees.

During a recent all-hands meeting, executives addressed concerns raised on the company’s internal forum, Dory, with many of the top-rated issues related to Bard’s priorities.

This was the first companywide meeting since Google employees criticized CEO Sundar Pichai for the way the Bard announcement was handled.

The negative impact of the Bard rollout has also affected Alphabet’s stock price, with investors worried about the search engine being displaced by AI-powered responses. Some Google staffers described the initial presentation of Bard as rushed and botched.

At the all-hands meeting, Jack Krawczyk, the product lead for Bard, made his debut and responded to a question raised on Dory.

“Bard and ChatGPT are large language models, not knowledge models. They are great at generating human-sounding text, they are not good at ensuring their text is fact-based. Why do we think the big first application should be Search, which at its heart is about finding true information?”

Krawczyk responded by immediately saying, “I just want to be very clear: Bard is not search.”

“It’s an experiment that’s a collaborative AI service that we talked about,” Krawczyk said. “The magic that we’re finding in using the product is really around being this creative companion to helping you be the sparkplug for imagination, explore your curiosity, etc.”

According to him, Google is still focused on serving users who utilize the search function, and has developed an internal tool called “Search It.”

“We’re going to be trying to get better at generating the queries associated there, as well as relaying to users our confidence,” Krawczyk said. He added that users will see a tab that says “view other drafts,” which would point people away from search-like results.

“But as you want to get into more of the search-oriented journeys, we already have a product for that — it’s called search,” he said.

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