The AI GPT posting chaos kicked into a feeding frenzy last Friday and continued this week. As I read my newsfeed, the volume of posts is overwhelming. Half the posts encouraged everyone to join the AI Revolution and to be assimilated, while the other posts called for a pause and accountability.
It’s like we’re all in a large sports stadium. Everyone is talking, yelling, or screaming simultaneously—the sound blurs into a defeating noise that pierces your ears with a resulting headache. No one is heard above the roar. Any realistic plans for managing the new tech tool, or guidance, if available, aren’t audible.
Instead of recapping posts like last week, I spoke with individuals about what they thought of AI and GPT. Were they concerned? Had they heard of GPT, and what did they think? About half of the individuals were strangers; the remaining were neighbors and individuals from my professional network.
This post is from a philosophical viewpoint.
I spoke with an attorney who had been using GPT for his work and didn’t appear to be overly concerned about the incorrect information. However, he expressed tribulations for the legal profession, as anyone could seek legal advice from GPT.
After our conversation, I thought of two things. First, how much does an individual bet their career on the accuracy of the GPT, and second, if the information was wrong, could they be sued?
Second, if an individual used GTP for a legal matter, and once again, the information was incorrect, could they sue GTP, or would it be a case of buyer beware?
The burden of verifying information always falls on the user. Or does it?
A grocery store cashier is pivoting her career to become a dental hygienist. She is concerned she will not finish her degree before the robots arrive. She is also concerned about her children’s future. The cashier is working two jobs, going to school, and caring for her kids while wondering how she and her children will earn money in the future.
With the potential for automation everywhere, many industries continue to deal with severe labor shortages. We should consider adding more classes for jobs and professions less likely to be automated instead of continuing to hyper focus on STEM education and jobs, which could also be automated in the near future.
Many organizations, including education, have cemented their positions in the sand, unwilling to change. Yet, as a society, we need more professionals in less glamorous industries such as trucking, shipping, and construction this need isn’t going away until robotics are used exclusively.
The Business Owner
They had heard of GPT and were ignoring it as they believed it was a fad that would go away. They viewed GPT like social media and thought it was overhyped. The business owner had not made any immediate plans to use the technology. Instead, they are dealing with an ongoing labor shortage, which is directly impact the business and is a more serious problem than GPT.
How many businesses will view GPT as another form of social media or fad? No one knows how GTP will impact small businesses. Also, many businesses are dealing with a tidal flood of new crop of “AI business consultants” who seek to milk the GPT.
Do these “consultants” understand the technology to provide realistic business strategy on how to use GPT in an ethically and beneficial manner?
The musician, who has worked for over twenty years producing albums for other bands and singers, is concerned. He has experimented with GPT to write lyrics and found them bland, missing the human element. As a result, he isn’t interested in using the MLL for his work or the bands he produces. He expressed concern that the music in the future would all sound the same without any individuality. Sadly, like it does now.
As a poet and lyricist, I agree with the musician and will continue to write without GPT because I want to sound different from everyone else. I want to create my work. I am biased because the writing and creative process is a unique experience; catching a poem or song in its pure creative flow form is an unmatched exhilarating feeling. To have a computer generate the content is bland; it just isn’t the same.
We discussed – what’s the point of creating if you default your creativity to GPT?
The College Student
The individual uses multiple AI apps with little thought of verifying information. They believe what they read without reservation and defaulted decisions to the GPT with little critical thinking. The idea that the information could be incorrect or misleading never occurred to the student.
I spoke with multiple educators about the GPT. Each educator said GPT must be discussed. We talked about ways GPT could strengthen students’ critical thinking skills and how to analyze information instead of blindly accepting GPT’s responses. There is concern about the rapid rush to assimilate the GPT into everything, that valuable aspects of learning and our humanity could or will be lost.
The discussion about the ability to choose to use the technology or not is missing from the posts online. Many posts were focused on how to use GPT; with strong nudging or demand for assimilation which is concerning. Also, regardless of age, every artist and creative writer I’ve spoken with about GPT will continue with their art without the technology.
Individuals are concerned about their professions and the impact of this technology. Some mention the implications for humanity. The educators said we’re not ready and that GPT differs from previous technologies.
What happens when our careers disappear and it’s challenging to retool or adapt? What if individuals aren’t interested in retooling their careers after ten, fifteen, or more years?
What if we lose our sense of purpose? When we stop making decisions for ourselves, stop working through challenging problems, or think critically while writing a paper or research report, the feeling of personal growth and achievement is lost.
What does it mean to be human when we delegate our thinking and decisions to a machine? What will happen when the fundamental foundation of what it means to be human radical changes or disappears to the point that it discombobulates us?
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