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ChatGPT cranks out gibberish for hours

“We are investigating reports of unexpected responses from ChatGPT,” OpenAI said when the software seemed to go wacky.

ChatGPT creator OpenAI did not explain what went awry with its generative artificial intelligence (AI) tool
ChatGPT creator OpenAI did not explain what went awry with its generative artificial intelligence (AI) tool - Copyright AFP SEBASTIEN BOZON
ChatGPT creator OpenAI did not explain what went awry with its generative artificial intelligence (AI) tool - Copyright AFP SEBASTIEN BOZON

ChatGPT spewed nonsensical answers to user’s queries for hours Tuesday into Wednesday before eventually returning to its apparent senses.

OpenAI did not explain what went awry with its generative artificial intelligence (AI) tool, considered the one to beat in the technology sector.

“We are investigating reports of unexpected responses from ChatGPT,” OpenAI said on its status website when the software seemed to go wacky on Tuesday afternoon.

ChatGPT was giving “peculiar” responses, generating nonexistent words, incomplete sentences and general gobbledygook, developers using the tool said in a discussion forum on the OpenAI website.

“It gives me meaningless words followed by a bizarre list,” one developer lamented in the forum.

“It feels as if my GPT is haunted or something has been compromised, either on my end or at OpenAI’s (end).”

It wasn’t until more than 16 hours had passed that OpenAI updated the page with a message that ChatGPT was operating normally.

The San Francisco based technology firm replied to an AFP query by directing it to the ChatGPT status page.

OpenAI recently concluded a deal with investors that reportedly valued the start-up at $80 billion or more, after a roller-coaster year for the tech firm.

The agreement, reported by the New York Times but not yet confirmed by OpenAI, would mean the value of the company — a world leader in generative AI — would have nearly tripled in under 10 months.

OpenAI led a revolution in AI when it placed its ChatGPT program online in late 2022.

The immediate success of the interface sparked tremendous interest in the cutting-edge technology, capable of producing text, sounds and images upon demand.

OpenAI — which is also the maker of image-generating DALL-E — recently released a new tool named “Sora,” which can create realistic videos of up to a minute long via simple user prompts.

Microsoft has invested some $13 billion in OpenAI, using the startup’s technology in Bing and other services.

Microsoft is locked in fierce competition with Google to roll out new AI-infused tools, to the point that the US Federal Trade Commission in January launched an investigation into the enormous investments by Microsoft, Google and Amazon in such specialized start-ups.

AFP
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With 2,400 staff representing 100 different nationalities, AFP covers the world as a leading global news agency. AFP provides fast, comprehensive and verified coverage of the issues affecting our daily lives.

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