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A Bit of Burgos by Dale Burgos

Artificial Intelligence: Unlocking the future

by Dale Burgos

ChatGPT logoWIKIPEDIA“In the realm of technology, there’s been a recent buzz that’s hard to ignore. Artificial Intelligence, or AI, has taken centre stage, captivating headlines and conversations worldwide. With its rapid advancements and growing presence in our daily lives, AI has become the talk of the town. From personalized recommendations to virtual assistants and smart home automation, AI’s potential to revolutionize how we live, work, and interact is no longer a distant dream. In the last few months alone, the spotlight on AI has intensified, unveiling a wave of innovative applications, and igniting both curiosity and excitement among users and experts alike.”

Artificial Intelligence, specifically, companies like OpenAI’s ChatGPT has been making headlines for months now. What is it and what are the benefits? Let me show you the ways.

First, the introduction to this month’s article was written entirely by using ChatGPT, which it wrote in seconds. My direction was to have it write a brief introduction to my article that should include AI’s benefits and how it has become a hot topic in the past few months. As you can see, it delivered, and yes, it took merely seconds to write that for me. The remainder of my article, I wrote myself. You’ll have to trust me on that.

Artificial Intelligence, or AI, has been around for a long time. My first introduction to this concept was in the movie 2001: A Space Odyssey. That movie was released in 1968! Since then, we see it referenced in movies, like in the Terminator franchise, where AI is portrayed as the villain that is responsible for the end of humankind. AI has always had a bit of a negative connotation, and that’s why I completely understand people’s apprehension to the tech. Yet, AI is weaved into our everyday lives, and we didn’t even know it!

AI is used on our phones (Siri) or when binge watching our favourite shows on Netflix. Social media uses AI to analyze user behaviour and creates preferences to curate personalized content feeds. Have you ever used the chat function when contacting your cell phone provider? Yep, you guessed it, that is AI as well.

There are many forms of AI platforms where you can have it create essays, images and even songs! The most popular platform at the moment is the aforementioned ChatGPT, which stands for Chat Generative Pre-trained Transformer. ChatGPT specifically focuses on generating responses in a conversational context, making it suitable for chatbot applications and interactive dialogue systems.

I have used it many times in my day-to-day. It has helped proofread documents, speeches and more. It has even suggested content that I would not have thought of. I don’t count on this service, but I can safely say I have become more proficient at my job. I’m not alone, I know so many who use it daily. In fact, there are reports that there are over 100 million users worldwide!

So, what are the benefits of AI? Smart home automation for one. AI-powered smart homes can automate various tasks, such as adjusting temperature settings, lighting, and security systems. It can also be your own personal virtual assistant. Do you have an iPhone? Have Siri assist with scheduling appointments, setting reminders, and answering questions. Concerned about your health? AI can monitor your health by analyzing data from smart devices like a smart watch. It can track your fitness and sleep patterns. It can even detect if the user has fallen and will call authorities if it senses that the person is not moving. Fascinating stuff, eh?

Like many other forms of technology, it comes with its downsides. History has shown that nefarious people will always find ways to scam innocent folk. How many spam calls from “Canada Revenue” do you get on your phone? How many messages from Nigerian princes offering you $10 million did you get when e-mail began?

With the advent of new AI tech, it is making it more difficult to spot a scam. Take the voice recognition software scam. AI can create an entire message by taking samples of someone’s voice. You may think you are receiving a call from a child, friend or family member asking for money to help bail them out of jail. It will sound like them, but is in fact, an AI generated message. As with anything, if it is too good to be true or too far-fetched, keep your wits about you. If you don’t know how to do that, ask ChatGPT to help.

Dale manages the communications department for a school district in B.C.

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