Just a Moment News - 2024-02-09


Hello and welcome to ‘Just a Moment News’, I’m your host Erika. Today is February 9th, 2024, and we have some interesting stories to discuss.

First up, Google has decided to rename its Bard chatbot to Gemini, in a strategic move to compete with OpenAI’s ChatGPT. This rebranding is a part of Google’s comprehensive update and expansion of its AI offerings, which includes the introduction of Gemini AI language model. Gemini for Google Workspace will facilitate the integration of generative AI into Google’s suite of productivity tools, such as Docs and Gmail. In addition, Google has introduced a premium version of the AI model called Gemini Advanced, available through a new AI subscription plan on Google One. This move signifies Google’s accelerated push into AI, reflecting a broader strategy to monetize its advanced AI capabilities and integrate them more deeply into its ecosystem of products and services.

In sports news, former Australian Olympian James Magnussen has shown interest in participating in the controversial “Enhanced Games,” a competition that allows the use of performance-enhancing drugs. This initiative, introduced by businessman Aron D’Souza, aims to set up a platform where athletes can legally compete using PEDs. Magnussen’s interest is contingent upon the promise of lucrative rewards, particularly a 1.5 million Australian Dollar bonus for breaking the 50m freestyle world record. The proposal, backed by notable investors, has sparked a mix of interest and skepticism within the sporting community.

Next, X, formerly known as Twitter, is pushing aggressively into video content. They have partnered with WWE to produce a series called ‘WWE Speed,’ which will showcase wrestling matches and appearances by stars like Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. This move follows X’s earlier announcements of new video shows with former CNN anchor Don Lemon, sports-radio commentator Jim Rome, and former US Representative Tulsi Gabbard. X hopes that high-quality video content can help attract more advertising dollars, as it recovers from financial struggles since Elon Musk’s takeover.

In entertainment, HBO is developing a new ‘Game of Thrones’ spinoff series focusing on Aegon’s Conquest, partnering with notable writer Mattson Tomlin. The series will explore the Targaryen’s unification of Westeros and is set as a direct prequel to “House of the Dragon.” This project signifies a “back to basics” approach to George R.R. Martin’s world, aiming to delve into the complex and bloody history of the Targaryen conquest.

Turning to politics, President Cyril Ramaphosa’s State of the Nation Address (SONA) has drawn criticism from opposition leaders. While Ramaphosa celebrated the advancements made in South Africa over the past thirty years of democracy, opposition leaders labeled his narrative as “Cyril in Wonderland,” arguing that it overlooks the severity of South Africa’s current challenges.

In tech news, Sam Altman, the CEO of OpenAI, is pursuing a monumental initiative to transform the global semiconductor industry. He aims to raise between five and seven trillion dollars to increase the world’s chip manufacturing capacity significantly, powering artificial intelligence advancements. This project addresses the shortage of high-cost AI chips, which are essential for training sophisticated AI models.

Finally, in South Africa, Eskom has increased load-shedding to stage 4 after taking down two generating units for repairs. This move came only a few hours after President Cyril Ramaphosa finished his 2024 State of the Nation Address, in which he asserted that the rotational power cuts were on their way out.

That’s all for today’s stories. Thank you for tuning in to ‘Just a Moment News’. I’m Erika, and I’ll be back with more news tomorrow.

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