Japan’s AI Diplomacy

Also: Stanford just released its annual AI Index report


Today’s newsletter highlights pivotal advancements and strategic shifts in AI globally. Japan is asserting itself as a global leader in AI governance, emphasizing ethical standards and safety through its "Hiroshima AI Process" introduced at the recent G-7 summit, and by establishing the AI Strategy Council domestically. Meanwhile, Stanford University's latest AI Index report reveals rapid advancements in AI capabilities surpassing human benchmarks, led primarily by industry rather than academia, with a significant rise in investment in generative AI technologies. In consumer technology, Meta, in partnership with Ray-Ban, has launched AI-powered smart glasses that offer personalized fashion advice, symbolizing a significant trend in AI integration into everyday consumer products. In regulatory and societal contexts, the pervasive issue of AI-generated deepfakes influencing public opinion during India’s elections raises urgent concerns about misinformation. Additionally, updates include Google extending AI capabilities to older Android phones, and concerns about Microsoft’s new AI tool, VASA-1, which presents potential deepfake challenges. The newsletter also notes venture capital movements, with the OpenAI Startup Fund raising $15 million to invest in early-stage AI-centric ventures.


  • 🗾 Japan’s AI Diplomacy

  • 🎓 Stanford just released its annual AI Index report

  • 🥸 Luxury’s next big personal shopper? Meta’s AI smart glasses

  • 📲Google Releases New AI Boost To Millions Of Old Android Phones

  • India election: AI deepfakes of Bollywood stars backing political parties swirl as voters grapple with information overload

Japan is actively positioning itself as a leader in AI governance both domestically and internationally. Under Prime Minister Kishida Fumio, Japan is crafting a comprehensive strategy to influence global AI regulations. This initiative was highlighted during the recent G-7 summit with the launch of the "Hiroshima AI Process," which introduced international guiding principles for AI, reflecting Japan's commitment to managing both the potential and risks associated with AI technologies. Domestically, the Japanese government has established the AI Strategy Council, which collaborates with various ministries to regulate AI use, emphasizing the need for safety and ethical considerations in AI deployment. Furthermore, Japan's engagement in AI diplomacy is evident in its proactive approach to establishing international frameworks and participating in OECD meetings to discuss these critical issues. The country's efforts are not just about leadership but also about fostering a safe and ethical advancement of AI technologies globally, balancing innovation with necessary controls to prevent misuse and ensure privacy.

Stanford University's seventh annual AI Index report provides an insightful overview of the current state and trajectory of AI development, highlighting significant advancements and their implications for various sectors. According to the report, AI is now outperforming humans in several benchmark tasks, indicating its increasing capability in areas like image classification, visual reasoning, and language understanding. This performance underscores the pivotal role AI is playing in enhancing productivity and improving the quality of work across industries. The report also reveals that the majority of cutting-edge AI models are being produced by the industry, which has taken a lead over academia due to the substantial resources required to develop these technologies. Investment in generative AI has seen a dramatic increase, pointing to a robust growth trajectory for this sector. Furthermore, the United States remains a dominant force in AI innovation, producing the majority of top AI models globally. However, the report also addresses the need for standardized benchmark reporting to ensure responsible AI development and highlights a significant rise in AI-related regulations, particularly in the US.

Meta's latest innovation in AI-powered eyewear, developed in collaboration with Ray-Ban, introduces a personal styling feature that promises to revolutionize the way users approach fashion. These smart glasses, dubbed a virtual personal shopper, allow users to receive styling tips simply by looking in the mirror and querying the glasses. This feature aims to enhance the user's fashion decisions by suggesting items that complement their current outfit, offering a futuristic shopping experience. While Meta's new offering targets tech-savvy fashion enthusiasts, it highlights a broader shift towards integrating AI technology in consumer products to provide personalized, real-time assistance. The potential success of this tool could set a new standard for personal styling, blending fashion with technology to create a seamless integration of digital convenience into everyday life.

Google has extended the availability of its Gemini app to older Android devices, specifically those running Android 10 and 11, which still make up a significant portion of the global Android install base. Initially launched for newer versions, the latest update, v1.0.626720042, now accessible via the Play Store, enables millions of additional users to enjoy cutting-edge AI capabilities. This expansion not only rejuvenates older devices but also promises potential updates that could include other exclusive AI-powered features currently limited to newer models. The implementation of Gemini and related tools in such a wide range of devices demonstrates Google's commitment to enhancing user experience across its ecosystem, catering to a broad audience by harnessing the power of AI.

As India's elections unfold, a concerning trend involving AI-generated deepfake videos has surfaced, showing Bollywood celebrities like Aamir Khan and Ranbir Kapoor making political endorsements. These manipulated videos, which depict these actors criticizing Prime Minister Narendra Modi and promoting the opposition Congress party, highlight a significant challenge in the digital age: the battle against misinformation. These deepfakes are not only influencing public opinion by distorting the actors' perceived political stances but are also exacerbating the issue of information overload among voters. The phenomenon underscores the urgent need for increased media literacy and robust verification processes to combat the spread of such deceptive content, which can significantly sway electoral outcomes by exploiting the popularity and trust associated with these celebrities.

🛠️ AI tools updates

Microsoft's new AI tool, VASA-1, has raised significant concerns due to its deepfake capabilities, which can generate highly realistic videos from a single photo and an audio clip. VASA-1 integrates synchronized facial and lip movements, along with nuanced head motions, enhancing the authenticity and liveliness of the generated videos. This advancement in generative AI technology underscores the potential for creating indistinguishable fake content, posing serious implications for misinformation and privacy. Although Microsoft has positioned VASA-1 as a research tool with no immediate plans for public release, the existence of such technology highlights the growing need for regulatory measures and ethical considerations in the development and deployment of AI systems.

💵 Venture Capital updates

The OpenAI Startup Fund has recently completed a $15 million tranche, discreetly raising capital through a special purpose vehicle (SPV) structure, as revealed by an SEC filing. This fund, which operates independently though related to OpenAI, focuses on early-stage investments primarily in AI-related ventures across sectors like education, law, and the sciences. Key investments include legal tech startup Harvey, Ambiance Healthcare, and humanoid robotics firm Figure AI. Managed by Ian Hathaway, the fund previously faced scrutiny when its ties to OpenAI CEO Sam Altman, who had significant influence over the fund's decisions, were highlighted. Critics have pointed out potential conflicts of interest, although OpenAI maintains that its association with the fund was meant to be temporary. This new capital raise indicates ongoing interest and investment in AI-centric startups, further expanding the scope of innovation in the sector.

🫡 Meme of the day

⭐️ Generative AI image of the day