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Google launches Gemini, it’s latest AI model but faces backlash

Plus announcements from Meta, Apple, Runway, AMD, IBM, xAI and Stability AI

Today’s Highlights:

📰 News: Google launches Gemini, it latest most powerful AI model, but faces backlash for faking capabilities + Announcements from Meta, Apple, Runway, AMD, IBM, xAI and Stability AI

💰 Funding: VAST Data an AI data platform and Gecko Robotics for industry both raise $100M+

⚡️ Top News Stories:

1. Google introduces Gemini, its most capable and general AI model, developed by Google DeepMind.

  • Gemini is multimodal, able to process text, code, audio, image, and video.

  • It comes in three versions: Ultra, Pro, and Nano, optimized for different tasks and scales.

  • Gemini Ultra outperforms human experts and current models in various benchmarks as designed for sophisticated reasoning and understanding complex information.

  • Gemini excels in advanced coding, understanding multiple programming languages.

  • The model is scalable and efficient, running on Google's Tensor Processing Units (TPUs).

  • Safety and responsibility are central to Gemini's development, with comprehensive evaluations.

  • Gemini will be integrated into Google products like Bard, Pixel, Search, and Ads.

  • Developers and enterprise customers can access Gemini Pro via Google AI Studio or Google Cloud Vertex AI.

  • While their demo video gained popularity initially, Google is now facing backlash as it has been revealed to be not entirely real, with certain parts staged or edited.

2. Meta launches Purple Llama, a project to help developers build responsibly w/ open generative AI models, providing tools and evaluations for cybersecurity and input/output safeguards

3. Runway ML and Getty Images partner to launch AI-driven video model for customized enterprise content.

4. Apple has released MLX, a machine learning framework, and MLX Data, a deep learning model library, built specifically for Apple silicon, marking its entry into the generative AI field.

5. AMD announces new AI accelerators and processors, designed to run LLMs, w/ Meta, OpenAI, and Microsoft agreeing to use their latest chip as competition w/ NVIDIA increases 

6. IBM and Meta co-launch AI Alliance, a new international community of developers, researchers, and adopters collaborating to focus on open, secure, and ethical AI development.

7. Meta has released "Imagine with Meta AI," a standalone AI image-generator website trained on 1.1 Bn publicly visible Facebook and Instagram images.

8. Elon Musk is seeking to raise $1Bn for his AI company, xAI, following an SEC filing showing $135M raised from four unnamed investors.

9. Microsoft enhances Copilot with GPT-4 Turbo and multi-modal capabilities.

10. Stability AI releases StableLM Zephyr 3B, a new 3 Bn parameter LLM optimized for chat use cases, including text generation, summarization, and content personalization.

11. Microsoft President Brad Smith meets w/ China's Minister of Commerce Wang Wentao to discuss AI and trade relations between the U.S. and China.

12. G42, a major Emirati AI company, has decided to align with the U.S. in the ongoing U.S.-China technology war.

💰 Top Funding News:

1. VAST Data, an AI data platform that has developed a unified compute engine services platform, raised a $118M Series E, led by Fidelity Management & Research Company, w/ New Enterprise Associates (NEA), BOND Capital, and Drive Capital. 

2. Gecko Robotics, which develops robots that assess the safety and condition of infrastructure across industry, raised $100M Series C Extension from US Innovative Technology Fund and Founders Fund. 

3. Foretellix, a provider of safety-driven verification and validation (V&V) solutions for Automated Driving Systems (ADS) and Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS), raised $85M Series C, led by 83North, w/ Temasek, Isuzu, Woven Capital, NVIDIA, and Artofin.

4. MaintainX, a AI-powered enterprise asset management platform, raised a $50M Series C, led by Bain Capital Ventures (BCV), w/ Bessemer Venture Partners, Amity Ventures, August Capital, and Ridge Ventures. 

5. Replicate, a platform for open-source AI innovation focused on generative images and language models, raised a $40M Series B, led by a16z w/ NVentures (NVIDIA), Heavybit, Sequoia, and Y Combinator.

6. Leonardo.Ai, a generative AI art production platform for consumers and enterprise, raised $31M from Blackbird, Side Stage Ventures, Smash Capital, TIRTA Ventures, Gaorong Capital, and Samsung Next.

7. AutogenAI, an enterprise AI company specializing in bid-writing software, raised a $39.5M Series B, co-led by Salesforce Ventures and Spark Capital, w/ Blossom Capital.

8. Liquid AI, an MIT spinoff pioneering a new generation of AI foundation models built from first principles, raised a $37.6M Seed Round, led by OSS Capital and PagsGroup w/  Breyer Capital, Bold Capital Partners, Samsung Next, and notable angels including Naval Ravikant and Tobias Lütke.

9. Rhythms, an AI-powered enterprise productivity startup, raised a $26M Seed Round, co-led by Greenoaks and Madrona, w/ Accel, Cercano (formerly Vulcan), and Founders’ Co-op.

10. Sarvam AI, an Indian startup developing a suite of full-stack generative AI offerings with support for Indian languages and the market's unique needs, raised a $41M Series A led by Lightspeed w/  Peak XV Partners and Khosla Ventures. 

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