Meta and Microsoft launch Llama 2, the next-generation Large Language Model

Tech giants Meta and Microsoft have announced the release of Llama 2, a family of large language models (LLMs) designed to transform the field of artificial intelligence (AI). The partnership was unveiled at the highly anticipated Microsoft Inspire event, capturing the attention of industry experts and signaling a new chapter in AI development.

The joint venture aims to democratise AI and make its benefits accessible to developers and organisations on a global scale. Llama 2 empowers developers to build generative AI-powered tools and experiences that have the potential to reshape industries and redefine work processes.

Meta’s open approach has led to their choice of Microsoft as the preferred partner for the commercial release of Llama 2. Microsoft’s Azure, a robust cloud computing platform, will provide support for fine-tuning and deploying the 7B, 13B, and 70B-parameter Llama 2 models, ensuring a seamless and secure user experience.

The collaboration between Meta and Microsoft reinforces their long-standing partnership in the AI domain and strengthens Microsoft’s position as a leading supercomputing platform for AI. Azure’s purpose-built AI supercomputing platform, with its advanced infrastructure, hardware, and software, facilitates the development, training, and deployment of even the most demanding AI workloads.

The availability of Llama 2 models on Azure AI empowers developers to leverage Azure’s comprehensive tooling for model training, fine-tuning, inference, and AI safety. Additionally, Llama 2 will be optimised to run locally on Windows, enabling Windows developers to integrate the power of generative AI experiences directly into their applications.

Llama 2 joins the expanding Azure AI model catalog, which streamlines the process of discovering, evaluating, customising, and deploying pre-built large AI models at scale. This catalog, currently in public preview, eliminates the need for users to manage complex infrastructure dependencies.

Windows developers will also benefit from the integration of Llama 2, solidifying Windows as the primary platform for building tailored AI experiences. Utilising tools such as Windows Subsystem for Linux (WSL), Windows Terminal, Microsoft Visual Studio, and VS Code, developers can customise LLMs to meet the specific needs of their customers.

Azure AI customers can test Llama 2 with their own data, utilising techniques like prompt engineering and retrieval augmented generation (RAG) to optimise meta-prompts for their applications, ensuring safer and more reliable experiences for end-users.

Llama 2 is currently free for research and commercial use. 


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