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Will China become a leader in artificial intelligence?

Will China become a leader in artificial intelligence?

However, we must make an important distinction between what we can gradually call “older AI,” such as image and speech recognition, and the new “generative AI,” which America is now pioneering. When ChatGPT was launched by Microsoft-backed OpenAI in November 2022, it marked a seismic shift in the world of AI. Generative AI is a form of artificial intelligence based on large language models, from which not only texts but also images can be generated.

It took months for China to launch its own alternatives. But these Chinese models were unable to match their Western counterparts. Even today, China is still suffering from a huge backlog, which experts estimate could be as long as two years.

After all, the power of generative AI like ChatGPT is determined by the amount of data it can use. Almost the entire Internet is used as raw material for training algorithms. Specifically, because China’s Internet cannot be freely accessed and controlled, the country suffers from an open data problem.

According to Roger Cremers, China will therefore not be able to catch up with the West quickly. “A lot of foreign media is not allowed into China. Just think of the New York Times or the BBC. So you have the problem that you simply cannot include a lot of information in your language model. So it remains incomplete.”

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