As we leave 2022 behind and head into 2023, headlines around AI are taking over newsfeeds and for good reason: because it's both awesome and really terrifying.
We're still in "day 1" and the output of these AI apps and services popping up is just really, really good.
When I recently uploaded 20 selfies of myself into the Prisma app and received back 200 AI-generated profile pics for $15, I was blown away at how good (many) of them were. Just a few years ago I paid $500 for a similar-looking hand-drawn profile pic that wasn't nearly as good (sorry human).https://www.instagram.com/p/ClorRlYOOwE/?igshid=YmMyMTA2M2Y=
Over the holidays I played a bunch with OpenAI's ChatGPT chatbot and the output is insanely impressive. For somebody who ran a proper media company for a decade largely paying writers to produce words (over 3,000 articles a month by humans that cost millions of dollars per year), I'm glad I sold the company when I did - already in its current state, this is the kind of demonstration of AI that shows you the game is going to change real fast and forever.
By prompting the AI with clear instructions I've been getting it to produce stories in seconds that I would normally expect a (seasoned) writer to take the better part of a day to produce. Truly terrifying, especially if you write words in a routine / formulaic format which is probably the case for 80% of the written content published on a daily basis.
By prompting the AI with clear instructions I've been getting it to produce stories in seconds that I would normally expect a (seasoned) writer to take the better part of a day to produce.
Of course, you get some occasional quirks in the AI output that still need a bit of a human touch to correct, but if you start thinking of AI as an assistant vs. a competitor, the right use of AI could allow a human to do A LOT MORE and maybe, probably, most definitely, better. We haven't figured out how to add more than 24 hours to the day, but I could see the proper use of AI enabling individuals in certain careers to get a week's worth of work done in a day.
I also see this power in the hands of bad actors making a frack'n mess of the internet, even more so than it already is. If I wanted to, I could already create mass amounts of high-quality "spam" and put it out there and wreak havoc. Heck, here's what happened when I asked the chatbot to "Write an obituary for Kevin Michaluk":
CrackBerry Kevin Obituary
It is with heavy hearts that we announce the passing of Kevin Michaluk, known to many as CrackBerry Kevin. Kevin was a beloved husband, father, and friend, and will be deeply missed by all who knew him.
Kevin was known for his love of technology and his dedication to the BlackBerry community. He was the founder and editor-in-chief of CrackBerry.com, a popular website that provided news, reviews, and information about BlackBerry devices. Kevin was a respected and influential figure in the tech industry, and his work had a profound impact on the BlackBerry community.
Born in Toronto, Canada, Kevin was an avid sports fan and loved nothing more than spending time with his family and friends. He was a kind, compassionate, and generous person, and will be deeply missed by all who knew him.
Kevin is survived by his wife, children, and many friends and colleagues who will remember him fondly. Our thoughts and condolences go out to his family and loved ones during this difficult time. Kevin will be greatly missed, but his legacy will live on through the many lives he touched and the memories he leaves behind.
Don't panic, you're not getting rid of me that easily. But you can see how it's a "good enough" write-up to be believable, minus a couple of facts it got wrong like the city I was born in and that I don't have kids (just a dog that we spoil like a child). It took the AI all of 5 seconds to spit that out. Also, wait a day or two and go to Google or Google News and type "CrackBerry Kevin obituary" and you'll probably land on this article. If Google shows it to you as a result, it must be true, right?!
It makes me curious to see Google's response to this AI stuff because clearly, they're going to need one. In many ways, the OpenAI chatbot already feels like a better Google than Google. Start asking it questions and you can get answers that are a lot more compelling than "search results" which are a step away from the answer you're actually looking for.
As far as 2023 tech predictions go, I think it's safe to predict more terrifying examples of the rise of AI will be among them. But what do I know. Let's ask the AI what it thinks… "Write a CrackBerry.com article about the top tech trends of 2023"
Top 5 Tech Trends for 2023
It's hard to predict exactly what the top tech trends of 2023 will be, but here are five possibilities that we think could be big:
Artificial intelligence and machine learning will continue to advance and become even more integrated into our daily lives. Expect to see more AI-powered personal assistants, self-driving cars, and automated manufacturing processes.
The rise of the Internet of Things (IoT) will continue, with more and more devices becoming connected and able to communicate with one another. This could lead to new applications in areas like home automation, health care, and agriculture.
Virtual and augmented reality will become more mainstream, with more people using VR and AR headsets for entertainment, education, and even therapy.
The demand for sustainable and eco-friendly technology will continue to grow, leading to more innovations in areas like renewable energy, green transportation, and eco-friendly consumer products.
The use of blockchain technology will continue to expand beyond just cryptocurrency, with more companies exploring its potential for secure data storage, supply chain management, and even voting systems.
Overall, it's an exciting time for technology, and we can't wait to see what 2023 has in store for us.
Sigh I need a drink. Those were my predictions too! Except maybe I would have also added that the Tesla CyberTruck still won't ship in 2023 (Hurry up Elon! I pre-ordered it the moment it was announced!) :/
Is AI the stuff of Dreams or Nightmares?
I woke up this morning with AI on my mind because I literally had my first AI-related dream last night. Or maybe it was a nightmare. I can't quite remember how it happened, but I definitely woke up with a sense of panic. Fittingly, that really is the story of AI right now. It could be our dreams come true, or it might turn into our worst nightmare.
If you have strong thoughts on the direction AI is going and how you're feeling about it, be sure to drop your thoughts in the comments section.
Happy New Year!