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Google Next Conference recap: Time to roll up the sleeves!

We had the opportunity of attending the 2024 Google Next Cloud Conference and Partner Summit. There were many great sessions and big announcements throughout the week. Generative AI was the key theme of the conference this year, no surprise! As McKinsey Research estimates, generative AI could potentially add up to $4.4 trillion to the global economy annually. Google Cloud Next was a glimpse through all the buzz and how organizations are going to move towards realizing the promise of generative AI. 

The conference had the largest turnout of attendees over its short history. It was much larger than the previous Google Next I was able to attend. Across the sessions and in speaking with the GCP team, partners, and customers; there was a strong sentiment that organizations need to grow their generative AI and ML practices to be prepared for the future. Looking beyond proof-of-concepts and pilot projects, companies are looking to prepare their organizations to be in a well-tuned position to capture the benefits of generative AI. A few conference sessions and panels spoke to generative AI program management, how to setup proper governance, how to manage generative AI programs effectively, and how to track ROI on projects. 

What stood out the most to me was GCP’s commitment to providing the best ecosystem to research, build, and manage their user’s AI/ML workloads. There are still many innovations and breakthroughs to be had in generative AI. Each organization’s journey to utilizing generative AI will be different. Different projects within an organization may take different paths and require different LLMs, data, and processes to utilize generative AI. Seeing the potential for cloud-based AI, Google Cloud Platform (GCP) prioritizes offering a robust ecosystem and tools. GCP also has an open philosophy to using tools and LLMs, GCP allows you to use 1st/2nd/3rd party LLMs. Within the GCP ecosystem, you could use an open source LLM like llama, or a partner LLM such as Claude Opus/Sonnet/Haiku or Mistral, or Google’s Gemini models. 

GCP has invested in almost every part of their cloud stack to make the generative AI journey easier. They committed to spending $100 billion to keep on enhancing their cloud offerings for generative AI. Here are just a few highlights on GCP innovations from the conference: 

  • Vertex AI Agent Builder allows developers to build and deploy gen AI Agent experiences using natural language. 
  • Vertex AI has expanded grounding capabilities including the ability to ground responses with Google Search. 
  • GCP has added vector indexing to all GCP transaction databases. 
  • GCP announced A3 Mega GPU-based instances, developed with NVIDIA using H100 Tensor Core GPUs. 
  • The Google Axion processor is the first custom ARM-based CPU for data centers. 
  • GCP introduced AI-optimized storage options with new caching features and block storage service that can accelerate model load times up to 3.7x. 
  • Google’s Gemini 1.5 Pro LLM on Vertex AI supports a 1 million token context window and is now in public preview. 

In summary, the 2024 Google Next Cloud Conference proved to be a monumental event, showcasing the importance of generative AI within the tech landscape. The array of innovative tools and expansive ecosystem offered by Google Cloud Platform highlights a clear path forward for organizations aiming to harness the transformative power of AI. As companies gear up to capitalize on these tools and advancements, Google Cloud Next underscored the pivotal role generative AI will play in shaping the digital economy. 

Are you ready to roll up your sleeves and tackle generative AI? Team up with AAXIS, a certified Google Cloud Platform partner, for expert guidance on your generative AI journey!  

Schedule a Free Generative AI Discovery Session 

“Be practical as well as generous in your ideals. Keep your eyes on the stars, but remember to keep your feet on the ground.”– Theodore Roosevelt 


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