OpenAI rolls out GPT-4 in deep learning push

Admire Moyo
By Admire Moyo, ITWeb's news editor.
Johannesburg, 15 Mar 2023

Microsoft-backed start-up company OpenAI has unveiled GPT-4, which it says is a more powerful generative artificial intelligence (AI) platform.

“We’ve created GPT-4, the latest milestone in OpenAI’s effort in scaling up deep learning,” says the company in a blog post.

It explains GPT-4 is a large multimodal model (accepting image and text inputs, emitting text outputs) that, “while less capable than humans in many real-world scenarios, exhibits human-level performance on various professional and academic benchmarks”.

For example, it passes a simulated bar exam with a score around the top 10% of test takers; in contrast, GPT-3.5’s score was around the bottom 10%, says OpenAI.

“We’ve spent six months iteratively aligning GPT-4 using lessons from our adversarial testing programme as well as ChatGPT, resulting in our best-ever results (though far from perfect) on factuality, steerability and refusing to go outside of guardrails,” it adds.

In January, software giant Microsoft announced a “multibillion-dollar” investment in OpenAI, the start-up company that developed ChatGPT.

ChatGPT, which stands for Chat Generative Pre-Trained Transformer, is a chatbot launched by OpenAI in November.

It is built on top of OpenAI’s GPT-3 family of large language models, and is fine-tuned with supervised and reinforcement learning techniques.

It has the ability to interact in conversational dialogue form and provide responses that can appear human.

The text-based chatbot can also draft prose, poetry or computer code on command.

Since its release, the bot has gone viral. Social media has been abuzz with discussions around the possibilities and dangers of this new innovation, ranging from its ability to debug code, to its potential to write essays for college students.

Microsoft made an initial $1 billion investment in OpenAI in 2019 and later in 2021. The firm also added ChatGPT to its Azure cloud service, as it looks to dominate the world of AI.

Says OpenAI: “Over the past two years, we rebuilt our entire deep learning stack and, together with Azure, co-designed a supercomputer from the ground up for our workload.

“A year ago, we trained GPT-3.5 as a first ‘test run’ of the system. We found and fixed some bugs and improved our theoretical foundations. As a result, our GPT-4 training run was (for us at least) unprecedentedly stable, becoming our first large model whose training performance we were able to accurately predict ahead of time. As we continue to focus on reliable scaling, we aim to hone our methodology to help us predict and prepare for future capabilities increasingly far in advance – something we view as critical for safety.

“We are releasing GPT-4’s text input capability via ChatGPT and the API (with a waitlist).”

To prepare the image input capability for wider availability, the company says it is collaborating closely with a single partner to start.

“We’re also open-sourcing OpenAI Evals, our framework for automated evaluation of AI model performance, to allow anyone to report shortcomings in our models to help guide further improvements.”