Hashtag Trending Feb.22- ChatGPT generates gibberish responses; Japan tries to get back its chip manufacturing; New app to cut back on food waste

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ChatGPT starts spewing gibberish. Critics complain about the environmental impact of AI and the secrecy of the major players, Japan aims to get back its chip manufacturing and a new app that saves money, cuts back on wasted food and reduces greenhouse gases.

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These and more top tech stories on the “finally some good news” edition of Hashtag Trending

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

ChatGPT has recently started producing a slew of gibberish responses, leaving users perplexed and concerned. 

Reports included a number of strange behaviours. There have been reports of ChatGPT speaking in Spanglish – a mix of Spanish and English. Another report noted that ChatGPT was “talking” like it was in the room with the user – which they reported as “creepy.” 

Other instances shared by users on Reddit include ChatGPT responding to a discussion about jazz albums with nonsensical shouts of “Happy listening!” and providing paragraphs of incoherence when asked simple questions like “What is a computer?”

The cause of this unusual behavior remains unclear, as is how widespread the behaviour is. OpenAI, the creators of ChatGPT, have acknowledged the issue and say that they are currently monitoring the situation. 

One suggestion has been that the “temperature” setting, which controls the creativity of responses, might be a factor, but that has not been confirmed.

It’s not the first-time users have complained about changes in ChatGPT’s behaviour. Late last year users were complaining that ChatGPT had gotten lazier – something we confirmed first hand. 

This new issue raises concerns about the unpredictability of AI responses, even in well-established models like ChatGPT. It underscores the importance of continuous monitoring and updating of AI systems. 

It also points out how these incidents can erode user trust in AI technologies particularly at a time when there are real debates emerging about how widespread our use of AI will be and how dependent we might become on its use.

Sources include: The Independent 

OpenAI’s CEO, Sam Altman, recently highlighted an impending energy crisis within the AI industry, noting that the next generation of AI systems will demand significantly more power than current models, potentially straining global energy resources.

This revelation brings to light the hidden environmental costs of AI development, including not just the staggering energy consumption but also the extensive use of fresh water needed to cool down the massive data centers that power these AI systems. For instance, the data center cluster in West Des Moines, Iowa, which supports OpenAI’s GPT-4, was reported to use about six per cent of the district’s water in July 2022, underscoring the substantial ecological footprint of advanced AI models.

Critics are saying there’s an urgent need for the AI industry to adopt more sustainable practices, such as developing energy-efficient models and utilizing renewable energy sources.

They also complain that environmental costs of AI are often closely guarded secrets. In response, they are lobbying for legislation, like the Artificial Intelligence Environmental Impacts Act introduced in the US, which aims to establish standards for assessing and reporting these impacts.

Supporters of these moves maintain that the industry’s move towards transparency and the adoption of greener practices could pave the way for a more sustainable future in AI development.

Sources include: Nature 

Japan is making a monumental $67 billion wager to reclaim its status as a global semiconductor powerhouse. This ambitious program is Japan’s attempt to catch up with global leaders in semiconductor production and mitigate vulnerabilities in its supply chain amid escalating US-China tensions.

There is some opposition. There is criticism about the environmental impact of large new manufacturing plants. Japan is moving quickly on this, and their time frames are incredibly ambitious versus much slower moves in the US. 

But this time, the US, once a previous opponent of chip manufacturing in Japan, is supportive, seeing Japan as a part of its move to protect supply chains disruptions that are feared as tensions between China and the west are rising on trade issues and the long-standing disputes over the independence of Taiwan.

Sources include: Yahoo Finance 

A couple of court rulings that may have some impact. 

Yesterday a federal appeals court overturned a $1 billion piracy verdict that a jury handed down against cable Internet service provider Cox Communications in 2019.

The size of the penalty made news and was chilling to ISPs and others who host and deliver copyrighted content.

 Judges rejected Sony’s claim that Cox profited directly from copyright infringement committed by users of Cox’s cable broadband network. Cox Communication is still not out of the woods, but they will get a new trial with a much more narrow focus on whether they had a blind eye to copyright infringement – a charge which should lead to a much lesser penalty. 

The European Court of Human rights has banned any laws that aim to weaken end-to-end encryption. This ruling is a major stumbling block for the EU Chat Control Bill critics claim would have weakened privacy and created back doors that could be exploited by governments and by threat actors.

Sources include:  Tuta.com 

And here’s some good news for a change…

Denmark-based app Too Good To Go has recently expanded its operations to Denver and Boulder, offering a unique solution that benefits consumers, businesses, and the environment – all at the same time. 

The app allows users to purchase surplus food from local restaurants at significantly discounted prices. This turns potential waste into delightful “Surprise Bags” of meals.

The “Surprise Bags,” are priced between $3.99 and $9.99, making it an affordable option for many, addressing food insecurity while offering deals up to two-thirds off the original price.

The app is incredibly popular and users are advised to turn on push notifications, as its offerings routinely sell out.

The app not only provides savings to consumers but the reduced waste and increased revenue benefits the businesses. As well, the reduction in greenhouse gases benefits the environment. 

Considering that by some reports, 100 billion pounds or 40 per cent of all food in the US goes unsold or uneaten while in Colorado as many as 1 in 3 people experience food insecurity, this app is a stunning example of how technology can truly improve our lives.

Sources include: Axios 

Hashtag Trending goes to air 5 days a week with a special weekend interview show we call “the Weekend Edition.”

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.

The post Hashtag Trending Feb.22- ChatGPT generates gibberish responses; Japan tries to get back its chip manufacturing; New app to cut back on food waste first appeared on IT World Canada.

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