Google explains how AI overviews work.

Google's new AI Overviews have been turning up some interesting - and sometimes questionable - results. Some are real, many fake. Google is owning up to some early hiccups while explaining how AI overviews “don’t hallucinate” and early fixes.

What is going on here?

Google clears up their position on the wild AI overviews circulating on social media.

What does this mean?

AI Overviews are designed to be a more intelligent search tool, tackling complex questions by integrating with Google's core search tech. They aim for accuracy by pulling information directly from top web results, unlike chatbots that simply generate text that’s prone to hallucination.

However, early results have been mixed. While most searches work as intended, AI Overviews have struggled with nonsensical or satirical queries, sometimes pulling information from unreliable sources.

One example is the "eating rocks" query, where the AI overview directed users to a website with satirical content on the topic. This highlights the challenge of distinguishing between serious and nonsensical information online.

Google is actively working on fixes, such as rejecting AI overviews for odd queries and not trusting user-generated content for health and legal queries.

Why should I care?

Bad AI Overviews when it’s being served to millions of users bring unimaginable risks. It can negatively impact users, potentially spreading misinformation or harmful advice. Nice, that Google’s on top of it all.

I don’t expect Google to roll back AI overviews over these hiccups. We've seen similar issues with other new search features in the past, and Google is already taking steps to address them.

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