Ask Me Anything (courtesy of OpenAI)

So, I’ve calmed down about AI. Still convinced it’s the most significant evolutionary  tech advance in my lifetime, but I’m more optimistic than I was when ChatGPT first arrived on the scene.

Because I was an early adopter for OpenAI, I got access to the GPT builder when it first came out. I experimented with it and quickly built this handy custom chatbot for this blog.

The bot searches the ITSinsider blog before it goes out to the web. So, anything you want to know about the era of Enterprise 2.0, Social Business, Social Collaboration, etc., that I’ve written about is found easily. The chat provides a neat summary of the answer to your question (unlike simple search). I moved domains, so I’ll probably keep it up for a few more years.

I used it this week, in fact when one of my earliest sources, Simon Revell, announced he was retiring from Pfizer after 25 years. Here is the inquiry and the response:

Anyway, try it. It’s kind of fun.

ITSinsider AMA

If you want to create your own custom GPT, here is where to do it. Anyone still supporting a long-running blog or content source on the internet (that you own) should probably do it.

Have fun! We might as well enjoy AI because it is here to stay.


Land Sakes Alive! AI is Coming… Hard

AI is unlike technology advances that have come before.

Yep. Sounding the alarms.

Like most tech professionals my age, we lived through every remarkable step-change and wonderful advancement in tech over many decades. I literally learned computer programming on keypunch card decks we had to feed to the County mainframe overnight. (Fortran IV, thank you.)  As a side note, I was one of the only female students in my high school class to take the inaugural class in “computer programming.” That was 1977. It was a milestone in our high school’s history.

From there, I lived through the IBM-dominated mainframe computing era to the client/server revolution, to the more disruptive PC revolution.  Tech advances continued to the shift to mobile, SaaS, and both Internet revs 1.0 and 2.0. Everyone my age in tech lived through these transitions.

Although these shifts always move chess pieces on the game board, they were not viewed as dangerous or lethal. They simply realigned roles and positions. People employed in old skills, retooled and learned new skills.

But, dear friend of the ITSinsider blog, I’m telling you…as a friend, AI is different. It’s not the same as what’s come before.

This blog has been always been subtitled, “What’s Next in Tech.” I stopped writing here a few years ago. I’m rethinking that decision now with the pace and scale of AI advancements.

According to the research firm, CBInsights, there are 117 AI startups right here in Austin in various stages of growth. Yesterday’s “duty to warn” letter from leading tech, political, and academic luminaries probably won’t stop progress, but it shot an important red flare distress signal out to the world.

I’ve been checking in with friends around the techosphere, to take their temperature on how AI is sitting with them.

Yesterday, for instance, I caught up with my old  friend, colleague, and thought leader on Future of Work, Dion Hinchcliffe.  I’ve always known Dion to be a techno-optimist like I am. Dion has been experimenting with GPT-4 on his own and has been unsettled with the results.  “I tested it using knowledge it can’t possibly know, and it does what I asked.” he said. “I will say to myself, ‘It will never pass this [test],’ and it does– in a couple of seconds.”

He told me there’s no putting AI back in the can. He shared that he’s most concerned about the Python runtime AI that is fully firewalled. The AI can not only write the code to answer questions, but it can execute that code as well. The fact that the AI can reason with fully working knowledge of a subject is what’s most alarming, he said.

Net, net

The era of AI is upon us. As someone who’s been openly optimistic about using technology to improve life on the planet, this has my full attention. I will be checking in with more friends around the globe, and looking into some of the companies making moves in this space. Feel free to tell me your thoughts here or on social channels where we are connected.