“Inside the World of LLM Building in China: Insights from an Alibaba Employee”

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Chinese tech companies are gathering all sorts of resources and talent to narrow their gap with OpenAI, and experiences for researchers on both sides of the Pacific Ocean can be surprisingly similar. The parallel glimpse into their typical day reveals striking similarities, with wake-up times at 9 a.m. and bedtime around 1 a.m. Both start the day with meetings, followed by a period of coding, model training and brainstorming with colleagues. Besides building its own LLM in-house, Alibaba has been aggressively investing in startups such as Moonshot AI, Zhipu AI, Baichuan and 01.AI. Facing competition, Alibaba has been trying to carve out a niche, and its multilingual move could become a selling point.