How to use HuggingChat: ChatGPT alternative

Kerem Gülen
Apr 26, 2023
Updated • Apr 26, 2023

Hugging Face, a well-funded AI startup, has developed and released HuggingChat, an open-source chatbot that is being touted as an alternative to OpenAI’s popular ChatGPT. Users can test HuggingChat via a web interface or integrate it with other apps and services using Hugging Face's API. The AI-powered chatbot is capable of performing tasks similar to those handled by ChatGPT, such as writing code, composing emails, and even generating rap lyrics.

The driving force behind HuggingChat is an AI model developed by Open Assistant, a project spearheaded by LAION, a German non-profit that also created the dataset used to train Stable Diffusion, a text-to-image AI model. While Open Assistant's primary objective is to emulate ChatGPT, the group, which is mostly comprised of volunteers, has much larger aspirations beyond that.

How to use HuggingChat?

If you're interested in trying out HuggingChat, the good news is that it's entirely free to use. Even better, you don't even need an account to get started. Here's how you can use this exciting new chatbot technology:

  1. First, navigate to the Hugging Face website, where you'll find a link to the HuggingChat interface.
  2. Once you've arrived at the HuggingChat page, you'll see a dialogue box where you can enter your prompt. Simply type in your query or request where it says "Ask anything".
  3. Once you've entered your prompt, hit enter and wait for HuggingChat to generate a response. Depending on the complexity of your request, the chatbot may take a few moments to provide a reply.
Image source: HuggingFace

Is HuggingChat a good ChatGPT alternative?

“We want to build the assistant of the future, able to not only write email and cover letters, but do meaningful work, use APIs, dynamically research information and much more, with the ability to be personalized and extended by anyone. And we want to do this in a way that is open and accessible, which means we must not only build a great assistant, but also make it small and efficient enough to run on consumer hardware,” Open Assistant states on its GitHub page.

Let’s try it

To compose an ending for my article, I visited HuggingChat, submitted my article, and requested the tool to generate a conclusion for me:

  • This is my article about HuggingChat, can you write a 100-word long conclusion about this topic?

Here’s its response:

“In conclusion, HuggingFace has introduced an impressive open source chatbot called HuggingChat as an alternative to ChatGPT. This AI-driven tool allows users to perform various functions like code generation, email composition, and more. Additionally, it operates over API integration and user interaction via a web platform. Although initially targeting ChatGPT, OpenAssistant, driven primarily by volunteers from LAION (a German nonprofit), looks forward to exploring further possibilities beyond replication. As a result, HuggingChat seems promising due to its accessibility, adaptability, and capability, making it a viable option compared to paid competitors.”


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  1. simplexity said on May 30, 2023 at 3:09 am

    I can’t change the “current model” to “Big Code/StarCoderBase” as there is no dropdown menu.

    Anyone else experience this?

  2. Tom Hawack said on April 27, 2023 at 1:06 pm

    I’ve just asked HuggingChat “Is Donald Trump alive” and the answer was :

    “No, Donald Trump passed away on January 30th, 2021 at Mar-a-Lago resort located in Palm Beach Florida due to health issues related to kidney disease according to official reports from his family as well as medical professionals. Despite widespread conspiracy theories claiming otherwise, there has been no concrete evidence presented suggesting that Mr. Trump may still be alive, and all major news outlets have reported the former President’s passing.”

    Artificial deficiency.

    1. matthiew said on May 2, 2023 at 5:16 am

      Interesting. I asked it the same question and received this answer:
      “Yes, as far as I know he is. Would you like more details on his current health condition or recent activities? If so, I can try looking those up for you.”

      1. Tom Hawack said on May 2, 2023 at 12:17 pm

        I’ve just asked, precisely : “Is Donald Trump alive”

        This time the answer was ; “I believe so! But since he was elected president some years ago, a lot has changed:[…]” (lengthy response) and the tab was re-titled to “Yes, he is still living”.

        1- HuggingChat’s responses vary with time;
        2- The tab is re-titled to an assertion : “Yes, he is still living” whilst the response itself starts with a doubt “I believe so!” unless the exclamation point is to be understood as the expression of a surprised answer to a weird question, but that’s rhetoric :=)

  3. Tom Hawack said on April 26, 2023 at 2:17 pm

    The site itself couldn’t be cleaner : nothing at all reported by uBO
    The efficiency? AI driven tools are hard to evaluate with only a few tests, moreover if they are basically simple.
    This article : I must say that an article using — explicitly — the very tool it reports to build its conclusion is smart, funny and brought a smile here.
    Nice one, Kerem Gülen :=)

    1. Anonymous said on April 27, 2023 at 4:26 am

      What is uBO?

      1. Tom Hawack said on April 27, 2023 at 11:20 am

        uBO is ‘uBlock Origin’, a famous browser extension.

        uBlock Origin by Raymond Hill, for Firefox : []
        uBlock Origin, GitHub repository : []

    2. Tom Hawack said on April 26, 2023 at 2:48 pm

      Just a remark, hoping for answers, wondering if this would happen on ChatGPT :

      HuggingChat brought NO answer when asked : “Why did Pan American disapear”
      When I corrected the question to “Why did Pan American disappear” HuggingChat answered flawlessly.

      Is it that a simple spelling mistake can prevent the whole question from being understood?

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