Google rush: “Build AI into everything” – Technology Org

Engineers at Google were given a timeline of some months to integrate AI technologies into its all major existing products and services.

A programmer in his workplace - illustrative photo.

A programmer in his workplace – illustrative photo. Image credit: Arif Riyanto via Unsplash, free license

This information was not confirmed by Google itself, at the time of writing this article. But according to a recent post on Bloomberg, the company is rushing to catch up on OpenAI’s ChatGPT and on its massive success, which already translates to a competitive disadvantage for the entire Alphabet group.

The reason for such haste is quite obvious. In recent years, Google has strongly positioned itself as an ‘Artificial Intelligence Company’, and most of the largest and most important developments within the last decade or so were coming mainly from this single source. Of course, there were always other institutions working in the same field, but their publicity and research scopes were not that large.

According to some experts, ChatGPT has enough potential to challenge even Google’s search engine market, which has always been its traditional revenue source. These worries, apparently, are very much alive within its offices. “There is an unhealthy combination of abnormally high expectations and great insecurity about any AI-related initiative,” an anonymous employee described the overall job-related climate.

A very similar situation arose more than a decade ago. Then, Facebook and its rapid growth were seen as a major threat to Google’s existence. In response, the company launched its famous but unsuccessful social media project Google+. Then, all the product engineering teams were told to integrate social network features, such as share buttons, across the entire product portfolio.

Some analysts blame the demise of Google+ on this forceful integration that was not a natural evolution but a rather heated, stressful, and heavily mandated transition.

Of course, Google has much more experience in AI than it ever had in social networking, so it is not very precise to compare the current race against ChatGPT to the situation that happened ten years ago. But at least some of the employees say the company needs another kind of transformation.

We’re throwing spaghetti at the wall. But it’s not even close to what’s needed to transform the company and be competitive,” commented one of the engineers at Google.

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