Meta is going all in on artificial general intelligence, says Zuckerberg. Here's why it matters

Meta hits the gas pedal on its AI developments, revving up investments in infrastructure.
Written by Sabrina Ortiz, Editor
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Meta has kept up in the AI race, releasing new generative AI models, features, and research constantly. However, the company is now positioning itself to dive into artificial general intelligence (AGI). 

On Thursday, Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg took to Threads to post an almost two-minute video updating the public on the company's AI efforts, which included a glimpse into its long-term goals for building AGI. 

"Today I'm bringing Meta's two AI research efforts [FAIR and GenAI] closer together to support our long-term goals of building general intelligence, open-sourcing it responsibly, and making it available and useful to everyone in all of our daily lives," said Zuckerberg in the opening of the video.

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He also added that the need for building total AGI has become more prevalent than ever since the technology will be crucial to fueling the next generation of AI services and offering the best AI-enabled assistance. 

As a result, Meta is building a massive amount of infrastructure. By the end of the year, the company will have 350,000 Nvidia H100s, or around 600,000 H100s equivalents of compute if you include other GPUs. 

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To put that compute power in perspective, Meta and Microsoft were the largest purchasers of Nvidia's H100 GPUs in 2023, procuring as many as 150,000 each, according to analyst firm Omdia. Meta's new goal of 350,000 H100s by the end of this year is more than double its already steep investment. 

So what is AGI, and why is Meta so focused on investing and developing it? 

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To put it simply, AGI refers to AI that can perform complex tasks, such as learning, reasoning, and more, just as well as humans. Currently, even the most advanced generative AI models still require human direction and instruction to complete a task.

AGI makes it possible to remove human instruction, direction, and supervision because the model can function autonomously. This development should significantly boost how AI can assist humans and even what tasks it can perform. 

However, AGI's unprecedented intelligence and its ability to mimic human behavior are often the reasons people approach the technology with fear or apprehension. Until now, AGI has remained a long-term goal, but Meta's updates show the technology might be developed sooner than anticipated. 

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While wrapping up the video, Zuckerberg also shared that Meta is currently training LLaMa 3, which is the latest version of Meta's advanced large language model, LLaMa 2, and he teased the creation of other future models. 

"Overall across all this stuff, we're just getting started," Zuckerberg concluded. 

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