Meta has just revealed the third version of its AI-powered chatbot and you can talk to it now.
Taking a break from its usual updates about Oculus Quest 2 or the ways it’s going to ruin Instagram next, Meta has announced BlenderBot 3 – a follow-up to its earlier prototype BlenderBot and BlenderBot 2 robots.
By heading to blenderbot.ai (Opens in a new tab) You can ask BlenderBot questions like a search engine or you can chat with him as you would a friend. If you use its search features, BlenderBot will not only provide you with the answer you want, but will share where you got its information from, letting you click to find out more.
Unfortunately, there is one limitation on who can chat with the new Meta bot: you have to be in the US. Some of our writers tried to use Express VPN to spoof their UK location, but they didn’t work – however, you might find a different VPN capable of hacking the Meta location barrier.
AI-powered chatbots have a less than excellent track record when it comes to interacting with the general public
Microsoft famously launched a Twitter chat program in 2016 called Tay which was quickly hijacked by nefarious users. Tay is designed to learn from users who have spoken to him. However, a concerted effort to spam Tai with hateful messages distorted the bot’s responses.
After just 16 hours of playing it, Tay was taken offline. The vast majority of her Twitter account tweets were deleted because they were filled with racist, homophobic and misogynistic filth.
Fortunately, the Meta chatbot will likely be less likely to be hijacked because it will not attract user comments on it. Instead, it will rely on data that researchers have previously fed it. The so-called Large Language Model (LLM) approach to AI could help create some competent robots — like the hugely popular DALL-E Mini — but they have other flaws that Meta hopes to resolve in its search for a reliable digital assistant.
If an LLM AI doesn’t have an answer to your question in its database, it often does what every parent does when their child starts questioning them about a topic they know nothing about – they’ll make up something. Meta hopes that the new bot can overcome this problem by using the Internet to find answers to some questions, although Meta also wants to make sure that its bot is providing the correct information from reliable sources.
This is where you come in. Users testing BlenderBot 3 are asked to provide feedback if they choose to opt in to having their data collected.
We’ll have to wait and see how the Meta experience goes but if you’re a developer looking to delve into the mechanics behind BlenderBot 3, you can check out the underlying code and training dataset that the Meta has shared. Barlay (Opens in a new tab). You can even request access to the largest version of BlenderBot 3 available through a file Google Form (Opens in a new tab).
If you want to take a look at some other fun AI, here are the seven best masterpieces created by the DALL-E Mini.
(Across the edge (Opens in a new tab))