IBM launches watsonx Granite Models to help businesses build, scale generative AI - The EE

IBM launches watsonx Granite Models to help businesses build, scale generative AI

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IBM announced the general availability of the initial models in the watsonx Granite model series, a collection of generative artificial intelligence (AI) models to advance the infusion of generative AI into business applications and workflows. The company also confirmed that the standard contractual intellectual property (IP) protections for IBM products will apply to IBM-developed watsonx AI models. IBM’s Granite models apply generative AI to the modalities of language and code.

These IBM models, built on a decoder-only architecture, aim to help businesses scale AI. For instance, businesses can use them to apply retrieval augmented generation for searching enterprise knowledge bases to generate tailored responses to customer inquiries; use summarisation to condense long-form content, like contracts or call transcripts, into short descriptions; and deploy insight extraction and classification to determine factors like customer sentiment.

With these models and watsonx, Armonk, New York-headquartered IBM enables businesses to be AI value creators. These businesses can bring their proprietary data to IBM base models and build a model that is unique to their business and use cases.

IBM has invested for years in developing its foundation models. They are custom-built for the specific requirements of business use cases, which by definition are more focused than consumer AI and demand the highest levels of precision and accuracy. IBM’s internal benchmarking shows that specialised models can deliver accuracy and do so with lower infrastructure requirements, to achieve improved price performance.

In addition to its own models, IBM provides flexibility to use third-party models like Meta’s Llama 2-chat 70 billion parameter model and models from the Hugging Face community.

IBM Publishes Information about its Training Methodology for Granite Models

These IBM-developed foundation models have been trained on business-relevant datasets from five domains – internet, academic, code, legal, and finance – and have been curated for business use by IBM. Training data was filtered for objectionable content and benchmarked against internal and external models to help enable responsible deployment and address key issues, including governance, risk assessment, privacy concerns, and bias mitigation.

As part of this process, IBM is using its end-to-end AI and data model lifecycle governance process and capabilities to manage and help mitigate client risk with the watsonx AI and data platform. This includes the planned release of watsonx.governance, an AI governance toolkit to enable trusted AI workflows. Watsonx.governance will be generally available later this year.

IBM Contractual Protections for AI Models

IBM believes in the creation, deployment, and utilisation of AI models that advance business innovation responsibly. This is the reason behind IBM extending its standard IP protection, mirroring the safeguards it offers for hardware and software products, to encompass IBM-developed watsonX models.

IBM provides an IP indemnity (contractual protection) for its foundation models, enabling its clients to be ‘more confident’ AI creators by using their data, which is the source of competitive advantage in generative AI. Clients can develop AI applications using their own data along with the client protections, accuracy, and trust afforded by IBM foundation models.

“When it comes to today’s AI innovation boom, the businesses that are positioned for success are the ones outfitted with AI technologies that demonstrate success at scale and have built-in guardrails and practices that enable their responsible use,” said Dinesh Nirmal, senior vice president, products, IBM Software. “Today’s release of IBM’s Granite model series and commitment to stand behind IBM-developed watsonx models is a testament to IBM’s end-to-end model lifecycle management process in its watsonx AI and data platform that delivers businesses cutting-edge AI outfitted for their unique business needs.”

IBM has built and made available a range of open-source tools and AI governance software to help ground the creation and use of this technology in principles of transparency, explainability, privacy, robustness, and fairness.

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