In an effort to surpass ChatGPT, Meta is open-sourcing its large language AI model

In what could be an effort to catch up to – and maybe even surpass – the internet’s current AI darling ChatGPT, Meta will be open-sourcing its large language model, LLaMA 2, in collaboration with Microsoft.

This makes LLaMA 2 free to use for commercial and research purposes, putting it on the same level as OpenAI’s ChatGPT and Microsoft Bing.

The announcement was part of Microsoft’s Inspire event, where Microsoft revealed more about the AI tools making an appearance in the Microsoft 365 platform, as well as how much they would cost users. Meta’s explanation of the decision to make LLaMA 2 an open-source tool is to allow businesses, researchers, and developers access to more AI tools. 

Free roam LLaMA 

Rather than hiding the LLM behind a paywall, Meta will allow anyone and everyone to have access to LLaMA 2, thus opening up the door to more potential AI tools being built upon the model – which could be used by the general public.

This move also gives Meta a sense of transparency, something that has been conspicuously missing from some AI development projects; Meta notably also showed surprising restraint with regard to the release (or lack thereof) of its powerful new speech-generation AI, Voicebox.

According to The Verge, Meta will be offering the open-source LLM via Microsoft's Windows and Azure platforms, as well as AWS and Hugging Face. In a statement from the tech giant, the company states that “We believe an open approach is the right one for the development of today’s AI models, especially those in the generative space where the technology is rapidly advancing”. 

Meta seems to be pushing for a community angle with the move, hoping that interested user bases will help stress test and troubleshoot issues with LLaMA 2 quickly and collaboratively. It’s a bold move, and could be the perfect way to counteract Meta’s recent struggles in the AI arena. I can’t wait to see what people make with access to an open-source AI model.

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Next WordPress release delayed after ‘large red flags’ identified

The WordPress developers have decided to push back the release of the next major version of the popular content management system (CMS) to January, 2022, after some developers expressed concern about the pace of development.

“I think there are some large red flags here that some things are not ready for 5.9….Overall, it seems like right now we are rushing things in a dangerous way,” wrote Addison Stavlo, a contributor to WordPress’ Gutenberg editor.

The original plan was to release WordPress 5.9 in mid December, 2021. However, things weren’t smooth during the alpha release cycle, forcing core developers to make several changes.

Better late than sorry

Not impressed by the changes to “so many things at the last minute,” Stavlo wondered why delaying the release wouldn’t be a better idea than making “regrettable decisions.”

As she announced the revised schedule Tonya Mork, Core Tech Lead for the 5.9 release, shared that the team had two options; either move the major features that had unresolved issues to the WordPress 6.0 release, or delay the release of WordPress 5.9. 

After careful deliberation, the core developers decided that the issues would be best handled now than later.

“The 6.0 release isn’t due until April 2022—too long for the community to wait for them [the features]. After processing this list of issues, Core Editor team saw the features could ship in 5.9 with the revised schedule. This decision, to delay the 5.9 release, was not made lightly,” explains Mork.

5.9 is still in feature freeze, and Mork stresses that the developers will use the elongated development period to iron out the issues and help 5.9 get to a Stable state.

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