The Morning After: Google tightens up its AI Overview feature after suggesting glue on a pizza

Worse than mayo.


Liz Reid, head of Google Search, has admitted the company’s search engine has returned some “odd, inaccurate or unhelpful AI Overviews” after the feature rolled out to everyone in the US.

The executive’s explanation outlined some new safeguards to help the new feature return more accurate (and less funny) results. Some of the worst AI Overview results doing the rounds were apparently faked, but the glue-on-pizza example was real, as was the viral answer to how many rocks you should be eating. Also real. Reid said Google came up with an answer because it had tapped into a comedy satire site.

The issue for Google is this could erode trust in the search engine’s results and accuracy. Reid said the company tested the feature extensively before launch, but “there’s nothing quite like having millions of people using the feature with many novel searches.” Maybe it needed a little more testing first.

— Mat Smith

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TMA (Firewalk Studios)

It’s been a long time since we had a first-person shooter from a PlayStation studio. Finally, Firewalk Studios’ Concord has broken cover. Firewalk says it focused on tight movement, precise gunplay and a range of abilities — just as you might expect from a studio led by former Destiny developers. It’s a five vs. five hero shooter, suggesting comparisons to Overwatch 2 — now a Microsoft-owned title. Expect 16 heroes, six game modes and some cinematic scenes between all the fighting. It’s coming to PS5 and PC on August 23, with a beta in July.

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Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference is right around the corner. Expect the company to reveal some of the main features of iOS 18 and iPadOS 18, as well as what’s ahead for the likes of watchOS, macOS and visionOS at WWDC 2024. Expect all kinds of generative AI tricks — hopefully even some compelling ones. I’d appreciate more photo-fill features to match Google’s efforts on Android. It seems unlikely we’ll get any major hardware announcements at the event, but you never truly know until Tim Cook wraps things up — maybe we’ll get a next-gen Vision Pro VR headset.

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Meta is rolling out a new TweetDeck-like column view to all Threads users after it started testing the feature earlier this month. The new look, which some Threads users have nicknamed ThreadsDeck, allows you to pin up to 100 feeds to the Threads home page. Each column can also be set to auto-update. Yeah, it’s TweetDeck but Threads. And you can more easily hide Threads’ trashy for-you feed. At least, mine is particularly trashy. Perhaps I’m the problem.

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