Hashtag Trending Dec.7- Google’s Gemini to outperform OpenAI? AMD takes on Nvidia with new GPU accelerators; Are we closer to understanding Altman’s ouster?

Google announces that its new Gemini AI will outperform its rival OpenAI.  AMD’s new chips are claimed to outperform its rival NVIDIA (at least for now) and we might be closer to understanding why the board of OpenAI fired Sam Altman so he could return and be more powerful than his rivals.


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I’m your host Jim Love, CIO of IT World Canada and Tech News Day in the US.

Google has announced its new advanced large language model (LLM) called Gemini, is now powering Google Bard and other AI-enabled products and includes a mobile version for Google’s Pixel 8 Pro. 

Google is also touting several industry-standard benchmarks which it claims shows Gemini outperforms ChatGPT 3.5.

Google unveiled Gemini in three sizes: Ultra, Pro, and Nano. Gemini Pro has been integrated into Bard, enhancing its capabilities in reasoning, planning, and understanding. 

Gemini’s design is multimodal, capable of recognizing and interacting with various formats like video, images, text, and voice. 

Gemini Ultra is currently undergoing additional safety and testing, but Gemini Pro is accessible to developers and enterprise customers through Google AI Studio or Google Cloud Vertex AI. 

Google also plans to introduce Bard Advanced, powered by Gemini Ultra, offering enhanced capabilities.

Gemini AI is also appearing in a mobile version on the Google Pixel 8 Pro. The phone now features Gemini Nano, a version of the AI model tailored for mobile devices. 

In practical terms, it will be used in the Smart Reply in Gboard and the auto summarize feature in the Recorder app. 

But Google is saying this is just the beginning of Gemini’s potential impact on Android devices, and will be a significant shift in how users interact with their smartphones.

Sources include:

ZDNet on Bard’s Upgrade 

Axios on Google’s AI Race

ZDNet on Gemini’s Impact on Pixel 8 Pro 

In the high-octane world of datacenter GPUs, a new champion has emerged: AMD, with its “Antares” Instinct MI300 family of GPUs that has positioned AMD as the performance leader in the datacenter GPU arena, at least for the moment.

AMD’s new GPU accelerators, designed to directly challenge Nvidia in the generative AI market. The demand for these chips has skyrocketed, particularly in the generative AI space, where supply can barely keep up with the voracious demand.

Nvidia, long a dominant player in this field, finds itself in a fortunate position where the overwhelming demand for AI training and heavy inference accelerators outstrips the supply. So even head-to-head competition between AMD and Nvidia is unlikely to lead to price reductions.  

At some point, the AI hardware market may normalize, and bring things back to a more traditional competitive landscape, but that’s not expected in the short term.

As the market evolves, both Nvidia and AMD will continue to push each other and the boundaries of technology. The upcoming Nvidia “Blackwell” datacenter GPUs are expected to reclaim the performance crown, albeit temporarily, as AMD is already working on the next iteration, the MI400.

If you really want to geek out on this, there’s a great and very detailed article in the Next Platform. There’s a link on the show notes at itworldcanada.com/podcasts

Sources include: The Next Platform

Microsoft is extending a lifeline to Windows 10 users and  offering three additional years of security updates beyond the October 14, 2025, end-of-support date. 

This program, similar to what was offered for Windows 7, is aimed at those who need or want to stay on Windows 10. 

But it comes at a cost.

The ESU program will provide monthly security updates and technical support, paid for annually. While pricing details are yet to be announced, it’s expected to follow the pattern of the Windows 7 ESU program, where costs increased each year to encourage upgrading to a newer Windows version. The cost is also per-seat, meaning it varies based on the number of PCs requiring updates.

A notable difference this time is that Microsoft plans to offer Windows 10 ESU updates to individuals, not just businesses and institutions. 

This program will not include any additional features for Windows 10.

For businesses, educational institutions, and governments, the ESU program provides extra time to adapt to new Windows features, educate users, and test for compatibility issues. 

With Windows 11’s new system requirements, not all Windows 10 PCs support the latest version, so staying with Windows 10 can avoid hardware replacement.

For individuals, that decision to stick with an older operating system could be to avoid hardware upgrades or just personal preference. The ESU program could offer a solution for those who prefer Windows 10 over Windows 11, depending on its cost and availability for different Windows editions.

Sources include: Ars Technica 

A recent in-depth piece in The New Yorker by Charles Duhigg, who spent months embedded inside OpenAI, sheds light on the tensions within the board that led to the decision to fire Sam Altman..

The report suggests that some board members found Altman to be manipulative but in particular the story talks about his efforts to have fellow board member Helen Toner removed. 

Toner, the director of strategy and foundational research grants at Georgetown University’s Center for Security and Emerging Technology, co-wrote a paper that criticized OpenAI’s approach to AI safety compared to Anthropic’s more cautious stance. This apparently didn’t sit well with Altman.

Altman’s politicking to have Toner removed was perceived as manipulative by some, while others saw it as a clumsy attempt to address the issue.

The board’s attempt to hold Altman accountable could be seen as a personality conflict gone wild or a much loftier goal of trying to ensure that AI benefits all of humanity – I always say, never look for a complex reason or conspiracy when simple human nature could be the cause.  

But whatever it was, it ultimately backfired, solidifying Altman’s position as a powerful figure in Silicon Valley.

Sources include: Ars Technica 

And that’s what’s trending today.

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You can get us anywhere you get audio podcasts and there is a copy of the show notes at itworldcanada.com/podcasts 

I’m your host Jim Love.  Have a Thrilling Thursday. 

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada
Jim Love
Jim Love
I've been in IT and business for over 30 years. I worked my way up, literally from the mail room and I've done every job from mail clerk to CEO. Today I'm CIO and Chief Digital Officer of IT World Canada - Canada's leader in ICT publishing and digital marketing.

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