Tags: artificial intelligence

I have seen the enemy and it is…

Words. An odd thought from someone who lives for them and earns a livelihood from them.

But while we’re all still fighting over fake news and free speech and truth and consequences, less than two months ago on November 22nd the San Francisco company Open AI released its latest generation writing bot called Chat GPT. It is to the revolution of thought what wheels were to roads.

Given the initial media response, ChatGPT will either shutter universities, vaporize teachers and homework, and eliminate rational debate, or usher in a new age of enlightenment. But as with many new technologies and bad drugs, the early days ChatGPT is fun and often magic. You ask it a question; it gives you a lengthy, thoughtful, nuanced, and often chummy reply. From 50 words to 5,000. Kul!

Meanwhile…

Fear and loathing…and awe.

We all knew the day would inevitably come. But so soon?

It seems artificial intelligence can now write almost as well as humans. Last week, OpenAI released their new ChatGPT chatbot for public testing, and the raves are pouring in. Try it now: it’s free. Just log in and ask it a question or assign it a task. But remember, it doesn’t search the internet; it ‘thinks’. For example, here’s what it comes back with when you ask: “What are the ethics
of creating test-tube babies?” and “Why did the chicken cross the road?”, and on a whole other level of thought: “Write a rhyming couplet poem about playing hockey in Canada.”

Given the pace of AI not just imitating language, but thinking in original ways, I’m relieved I’m an old writer and not a young one. Then again, new technologies always create jobs that didn’t exist before. But buckle up; real creativity is about to become a lot harder, as is ethics.

Meanwhile…

Complicit

Victory may have a thousand hand-maidens, but so does complicity.

This podcast tells how to avoid turning your gaze when others’ bad behaviour comes into view. But while a big part of complicity is often silence – “Nothing to see here, folks” – explicit badness can never seem to shut up and sit down. See FIFA President Gianni Infantino’s “meandering” one-hour take-down of Western countries for daring to criticize World Cup host-nation Qatar; and Donald Trump’s “rambling” one-hour speech announcing his run for President in 2024.

But the best examples of this growing art form are the filmed tributes to mendacity on a national scale, like this with David Beckham as part of his £150 million sponsorship deal touting Qatar.

Meanwhile, here is this week’s Omnium-Gatherum…

5th Wave, 4th Vaccine?

Here I was, so proud of my three jabs, and going out to a concert, and dining with friends, and getting on a plane and not feeling it was a flight into danger, and looking forward to Christmas. Very looking forward to that part.

Maybe they were right when they said the virus will always be with us, ever-mutating, one step ahead of science, faith and hope.

Oh well, at least we can still read at home on weekends.

Summer is a Season Again

Last summer didn’t count. We couldn’t go anywhere, do anything, see anyone. Already, this summer is making up for lost time. We’re going everywhere, doing

By the Dawn’s Early Light

I want to go to America. So do you. I know we live in a beautiful land. But like everyone else on earth, crossing a

Feats of Clay

We all have three lives, a friend once told me. Our public life, our private life, and our secret life. How many times is some

Hell is other robots

Technology didn’t miss a beat during the pandemic. Before COVID, computer voices sounded fake and HAL-like. Now, you can hardly tell if you’re talking to

Queen Victoria is not amused

It’s her weekend and are we planting our gardens without fear they’ll freeze overnight? Are we opening our cottages, swatting the blackflies, gassing up at

Love letters

“Whatever field you are in, if it uses language, it is about to be transformed.” That’s the subhead of last week’s New Yorker article by

RamsayWrites

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