AI, AI, Generative AI, Generative AI, it’s like the whole world one day woke up and decided to make their whole persona about AI. I mean, I get it, AI is cool. It was cool when it was pondered about mathematically, it was cool when it gave a us a way to cheat on tests and auto generate code. What is the limit though?
I mean, don’t get me wrong. I am not someone who like believes the whole “AI is going to take over the world” thing. I honestly want AI to advance. It is a wonderful technology that when used right can help us in so many ways. For example, I am able to write this article 10x faster because of GitHub Copilot.
AI has helped me learn any new language a lot faster. It has made me confident to explore new frameworks and not shy away from them. I mean, I am writing this article in Astro which is a new framework that I am exploring. I initially wrote my original site noobscience.rocks in next.js and then moved to Astro. All of this because I was coding 10 times faster.
I am not saying that AI is perfect. It is not. It is still in its infancy. It is still learning. It is still growing. This is why I am so excited about it. I am excited to see where it goes. I am excited to see what it can do.
However, I am not excited to see people use it as a buzzword.
Recognize this? This is a bitcoin. It is a cryptocurrency. It is a digital currency. It is a currency that is not controlled by any government. How many times have you heard the word bitcoin in the past 2 years? I am sure you have heard it a lot. This is exactly what is happening with AI. It is being used as a buzzword. It is being used to sell products. It is being used to sell services.
Don’t get me wrong. Incorporating it into your product is a good thing. All I am worried about is that people are going to get sick of it.
Now the cynic in me is saying that this is a good thing. That so many people using it will accelerate the growth of AI. That it will make it better. But, the same was said about bitcoin. The same was said about the internet. I wanted to include both of these examples because they are both very different stories.
The internet was a technology that was used by a few people. It was used by the military and a few universities. It was not used by the general public. However, when it was released to the public, it was a huge success. This made it grow faster and better.
Bitcoin on the other hand was a technology that would only be successful if it was used by a lot of people. It was a currency. Hence, it had a weird codependence. It needed people to use it to be successful. So, it inadvertedly became a buzzword. It became a buzzword because it needed to be one. All the scams, all the scams, all the people who were trying to sell you bitcoin were actually helping bitcoin grow.
Ironic isn’t it? The thing that was supposed to be the downfall of bitcoin was actually the thing that made it grow.
Where does AI fit in?
So, where does AI fit in? Is it like the internet or is it like bitcoin?
Well, in short, it is too early to tell. However I will try to make a prediction. If you have been on linkedin recently, you will see that everyone is talking about AI. There are prompt engineers left and right, people trying to sell AI courses and services. I mean it is everywhere!
“It is like the whole world one day woke up and decided to make their whole persona about AI.”
It is an awesome tool. But do you really need to list the fact that you can ask it questions properly as a skill? I mean I get projects that AutoGPT that actually use advanced prompting and stuff. But, if you are just using it to ask questions, then it is not really a skill.
I mean, speaking about linkedin, most of the people are scared that AI is going to take their jobs. To be clear, I am not saying that it won’t. Honestly, with the way things are going, it is going to take a lot of jobs. However, it is also going to create a lot of jobs. A lot can’t be said about that, especially by a teenager. The conditions however, don’t look good. The world just came out of a pandemic. People are still trying to get back on their feet. The last thing they need is a technology that is going to take their jobs. We are already starting to see so many people getting layed off.
Not to mention that the whole world is still trying to figure out how to regulate AI. AI regulation deserves a whole article on its own. So, I am not going to talk about it here.
Only time will tell if AI is going to be like the internet or bitcoin. I am hoping that it is going to be like the internet.
It is the right time?
Sometimes, I wonder if it is even the right time to start corportizing AI. I mean, it is still in its infancy. We don’t know the black box that is AI. We don’t know how it works, thinks, or even learns. I still can’t wrap my head around the neural networks and the amount of math that is involved in it. There are some of the best minds in the world working on it. And, they are still trying to figure it out. ChatGPT and OpenAI are partially blamed for this. Was it really a good idea to release it to the public? Again, yes and no. It is a good idea because it will help it grow faster. It is a bad idea because it will help it grow rapidly. If you are confused, then let me explain.
It is a good idea because, you now have the whole world to start testing it. The amount of jailbreaking that has happened with ChatGPT is weird. People have made it do so many things. The whole Sdney thing with Bing Chat and the whole “I am not a robot” thing is weird as well.
It is a bad idea because, you are exposing a very powerful technology that can basically summarize humanity (only till 2021 though) to the whole world. This is at a stage where you don’t fully understand the black box. You can’t predict what it will do. All the same while you are creating a whole industry that now makes it their job to use this technology
One more thing that is quite concerning is the fact that all the major LLm’s are owned by a few companies. This is not a good thing. This is not a good thing at all.
Every other company now has AI in some form or the other. I mean, I am not complaining. It is awesome. The header image you are seeing is generated by AI. I took a lot of help from GitHub Copilot to write this article. I am worried that people are going to get sick of it. I am worried that people are going to start hating it. You can already see this happening on the most vocal social media platform, Twitter. People are always posting about the 10 AI tools that you should be using. They are getting repetitive.
Don’t get me wrong, some of these new AI tools are awesome. I mean, tome.ai, Firefly, GitHub Copilot all of these are very awesome tools. However, they are not the best. You might notice that in some parts of this article, there are places where it is weirdly repetitive, like “Not a good thing”, “Not a good thing at all”. All those are places I pressed tab and it auto completed it for me. So, I would still prefer to write my own articles.
One more thing that is being overlooked is the fact the AI is slowly making the internet repetitive. AI is basically eating the internet and spitting it out. The same old same old content, slowly degraded by the saliency of the AI.
What should happen?
I think that AI should be used as a tool. As simple as that. There might be a point in the future where AI is so advanced that it can be used as a product. But, we are not there yet. We are not even close to there yet. Moreover, about jobs, I think that AI will create more jobs than it will take. I mean, I need more time debugging my code than I need to write it. I need more time to write my articles than I need to research them. So, AI will probably not take your job, yet.
However, I believe that AI must be embraced and not feared. It can make your life a whole lot easier.
Corporatizing of AI
First, it was OpenAI, that started out as a research foundation, then it became a company. Then Microsoft took a huge stake in it. Then, it was GitHub Copilot, Adobe. Now, it is Google Bard. All the major LLM’s are owned by a few companies. Now there are some open source models, but they are not as good as the ones that are owned by the companies. This is partially because of the fact that the companies have more resources to train the models. In my previous article on the costs of AI, I talked about how much it costs to train an AI model. Turns out, it is quite costly, you know what is more costly? Running the model.
So, eventually the open source models will be left behind. The whole wonderful world of AI will be owned by a few companies. I won’t talk much about this since I plan to write a whole article on this. Till, then, I will leave you with this thought.
“A year spent in artificial intelligence is enough to make one believe in God.” —Alan Perlis
This is a very controversial topic. I am sure that I have offended a lot of people. I am sorry if I did. I am just trying to express my opinion. At the end of the day, it is just an opinion. I am not an expert in this field. I am just a teenager who is trying to make sense of the world. The world of AI is very facinating and active. There are a lot of things happening. So, by the time you read this, a lot of things might have changed. Just know that the article is dated 2023-06-20. So, if you are reading this in the future, then you know that I am not a time traveler.