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As the world of artificial intelligence (AI) rapidly evolves, the conversation around smaller AI models has gained traction. Though compact, these models are becoming increasingly powerful and capable of handling a variety of tasks. Below, we explore the growing significance of smaller AI models in association applications, focusing on their efficiency, lower cost, and increasing intelligence.

The Rise of Smaller AI Models

Smaller AI models have been gaining attention for their efficiency and lower resource demands. While larger models such as OpenAI's GPT-4 and Meta's upcoming Llama 3 are impressive in their capabilities, they require significant computational power and resources to operate. Smaller models, on the other hand, offer an attractive alternative for developers and researchers who may not have access to such expensive hardware. 

Meta's Llama 3, for example, is set to release smaller variants alongside its flagship model. These compact versions will be optimized for running on consumer hardware like GPUs and cloud instances. By making these models more widely accessible, Meta hopes to accelerate research and development in areas like conversational AI, code generation, and multimodal applications.

The appeal of smaller AI models lies in their speed, affordability, and lower energy consumption. These compact models offer specialized capabilities akin to GPT-3.5, making them efficient tools for associations that want to integrate AI into their workflows without high overhead costs. Smaller models can efficiently handle tasks like classification and summarization, offers many opportunities for associations to streamline operations and enhance productivity. The evolution of small models is ongoing, with their intelligence rapidly increasing due to algorithmic improvements and large models training smaller ones.

3 Advantages of Smaller AI Models


Smaller AI models demonstrate a high level of efficiency due to their significantly reduced computational power requirements. This efficiency translates into faster processing times, which allows for quicker responses and decision-making within various operational contexts. Additionally, because smaller models consume less energy, they can be more sustainable and cost-effective for organizations in the long term.

Moreover, smaller models' efficiency extends to their deployment costs. By leveraging smaller models, organizations can achieve advanced AI capabilities without the need for high-powered hardware and extensive training data.


Smaller AI models are considerably more affordable compared to their larger counterparts, making them accessible to a broader range of organizations and individuals. The reduced cost is attributed to their smaller size, which translates to lower computational and energy demands. As a result, the models are not only faster and more efficient but also cheaper to run and maintain.

Smaller AI models, such as those in the GPT-3.5 class, are also becoming increasingly powerful, with capabilities approaching that of larger models like GPT-4. This growing efficiency allows smaller models to deliver robust performance without incurring the high costs typically associated with large-scale AI systems. The availability of these more affordable models opens up AI possibilities for smaller organizations, startups, and associations that may have previously been unable to justify the expense of larger models.


Smaller AI models provide additional benefits through their flexible integration capabilities. They can be seamlessly woven into existing workflows, offering support in various tasks such as routing submissions, automating content categorization, and even basic data analysis. The practicality of smaller models extends to enabling associations to manage unstructured content like text or images more effectively. By leveraging these models for tasks such as classifying speaker submissions, associations can streamline operations and enhance productivity. With their evolving intelligence, smaller models are becoming increasingly competitive with larger ones, providing high-quality AI solutions at a fraction of the cost.

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Increasing Intelligence of Smaller Models

Smaller AI models are on a path to becoming more intelligent and capable as a result of continuous advancements in algorithms and training methods. These enhancements allow smaller models to match, and in some cases, even exceed the performance levels of their larger counterparts. By refining training techniques and incorporating more efficient architectures, developers have been able to create smaller models that can handle complex tasks with remarkable accuracy.

One example of this advancement is the mixture of expert architecture pioneered by Mistral. This approach employs multiple 7-billion parameter models, combining its expertise to deliver performance that competes with larger models like GPT-3.5. This architectural innovation enables smaller models to access a diverse set of knowledge bases and reasoning abilities, thus extending their capabilities.

As the intelligence and scope of smaller AI models expand, they are becoming adept at a wider variety of tasks. Beyond classification and summarization, these models are now tackling more complex reasoning and logic-based tasks, which opens the door to specialized applications in areas such as natural language understanding, problem-solving, and decision-making.

The Future of Smaller AI Models

The future of AI seems poised for a shift towards smaller, more efficient models. While large models like GPT-4 and Llama 3 will continue to play a role in AI advancements, smaller models offer unique benefits such as lower cost, faster processing, and increased accessibility.

As smaller models continue to improve in intelligence and capability, we can expect to see them integrated into a wide range of business applications. From streamlining operations to enhancing customer interactions, smaller models are paving the way for a more efficient and affordable AI future.

Looking ahead, open-source models also may become as capable as current large-scale models like GPT-4 within a year or so. This provides further opportunities for smaller models to become more intelligent and versatile, trained by the large models, resulting in a continuous feedback loop of improvement.

Overall, smaller AI models represent a promising direction for the future, with their capacity to bring AI's benefits to a broader range of applications and audiences. As they improve in capability, their integration into various organizations, such as associations, and everyday tasks will revolutionize the AI landscape.

Jumpstart Your AI Journey with the AI Learning Hub

Smaller AI models represent a promising direction for the field of artificial intelligence. Their efficiency, affordability, and growing intelligence make them an attractive option for all types of organizations, including associations. As these developments move forward, it becomes even more critical to take the necessary steps to understand how AI works and how it can revolutionize your association. Register for our AI Learning Hub, designed specifically for association professionals, to begin your journey using AI.

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Allison Kral
Post by Allison Kral
April 18, 2024
Allison is a senior consultant at Ready North. She joined the agency in March 2021 and is a 2014 graduate from Ohio University, where she earned a Bachelor of Science in magazine journalism from the E.W. Scripps School of Journalism. With a background in magazine journalism, Allison harbors a love for writing and storytelling. She loves creating compelling content that engages readers and ignites conversations. Allison enjoys working in a fast-paced industry where she can grow, learn, and test her skills. She thrives in environments where she’s able to wear many hats—including writing, editing, marketing, social media management, and more.