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Essential AI Emerges From Stealth With $56.5 Million in Funding

artificial intelligence

Essential AI has reportedly emerged from stealth with $56.5 million in new funding.

The artificial intelligence (AI) startup, founded by two veterans of Google, has developed technology dubbed “Enterprise Brain” that can use AI for corporate functions like data analysis and automate monotonous tasks, Bloomberg News reported Tuesday (Dec. 12).

According to the report, Essential was founded by CEO Ashish Vaswani and Niki Parmar. While at Google, the pair joined another group of AI “heavyweights” to pen the “seminal” article “Attention Is All You Need.”

That paper, the report said, laid out the basics of large language models, the backbone of AI chatbots such as ChatGPT. Previous reports said Essential had raised $40 million.

As noted here in August, LLMs have brought AI to new heights by enhancing its capabilities beyond text to include images, speech, video and music.

“As they build, companies developing LLMs will contend with the challenges of collecting and classifying large amounts of data — as well as understanding the intricacies of how models now operate and how that differs from the previous status quo,” PYMNTS wrote.

Tech giants such as Alphabet and Microsoft and investors like Fusion Fund and Scale VC are investing in LLMs and forming partnerships, and in doing so, taking on a big task: making sure their LLM protégés collect and train using large data sets to shape them so that they execute and generate desired results.

As the report notes, data by itself is meaningless. In order to be useful to models, it needs to be sorted, labeled, measured, clustered and categorized in a number of ways. Classification and annotation data can also provide the proper context and intent, communicating what a human user meant or intended to say.

“Steering these volumes of data through rule sets with correct context is a work in progress.” PYMNTS wrote. “The effort requires that the model reviews and connects the dots with whatever happened earlier or happens later in the chat or text.”