Google I/O: Automated summarization in Google Docs serves as a TL;DR

Using machine learning, Google is launching summarization for products in Workspace, including Docs, Google Chat and Meet.
Written by Stephanie Condon, Senior Writer

Google on Wednesday announced it's adding automatically-generated summaries to Workspace tools, so users can quickly get up to speed on their workplace content. The new AI-powered feature will first roll out in Google Docs. 

"Wouldn't life be better if more things had a TL;DR?" Google CEO Sundar Pichai said during the keynote address at the Google I/O conference, referencing the abbreviation for a "too long; didn't read" summary. 

The new feature would be useful, for example, for someone who has a 25-page document to read ahead of a meeting that's just five minutes away, Pichai said. 

Using machine learning, the feature will automatically parse and pull out the main points from a document. It represents a "big leap forward for natural language processing," Pichai said, noting that it requires sophisticated steps like understanding whole passages of language and information compression. 

Later, Google will launch summarization for other products in Workspace. It will come to Chat in the next few months, so a user can jump right back into a group chat and look at the key highlights. Google is working to bring transcription and summarization to Google Meet as well. 

Google also shared how it's improving the audio and video quality in Google Meet. For instance, the company is bringing studio-quality virtual lighting to Meet, so users are visible even in dark rooms or next to a window.

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