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Google Cloud now offering free AI courses

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Google (NASDAQ: GOOGL) has launched a series of free online courses to introduce users to generative artificial intelligence (AI) as the AI arms race with fellow Big Tech firms heats up.

The search engine giant launched the courses this week through Google Cloud. They range from the fundamentals of large language models to creating and deploying generative AI solutions on Google Cloud.

The courses are the latest effort by Google as it seeks to establish itself atop the rapidly-growing AI industry. At the company’s annual I/O developer conference, CEO Sundar Pichai stated that Google is now an AI-first company, integrating the technology into all its products, from Photos and Maps to Gmail and its search engine.

Its latest courses offer an introduction to generative AI, large language models, responsible AI development, image generation, image captioning models, and its generative AI studio.

Google also announced this week that it had launched generative AI support in its machine learning platform Vertex AI. The platform allows users access to features for generating and classifying text in a ChatGPT style powered by the company’s large language model PaLM. Such services have only been available to trusted testers previously.

Some companies have already been leveraging the Vertex AI suite of tools, including the graphic design platform Canva and the code repository firm GitLab (NASDAQ: GTLB).

Google Cloud is also partnering with Mayo Clinic to expand the use of generative AI in health care. Mayo, one of the largest hospital systems in the world, will allow users to deploy their own chatbots, based on Google’s technology, to scour through internal data and make valid interpretations.

“It’s going to save a lot of time, it’s going to prevent physician burnout, it’s going to reduce administrative overload,” Mayo’s CTO Vish Anantraman said in a statement to the media.

As Google and other Big Tech firms make significant moves in AI, regulators are moving quickly to oversee the sector. In Australia, regulators are considering banning high-risk AI tools while the U.S. and the EU work together on a code of conduct for the industry.

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