What is ChatGPT?
ChatGPT is an AI chatbot system that OpenAI released in November to show off and test what a very large, powerful AI system can accomplish. You can ask it countless questions and often will get an answer that's useful.
For example, you can ask it encyclopedia questions like, "Explaining Newton's laws of motion." You can tell it, "Write me a poem," and when it does, say, "Now make it more exciting." You ask it to write a computer program that'll show you all the different ways you can arrange the letters of a word.
Here's the catch: ChatGPT doesn't exactly know anything. It's an AI that's trained to recognize patterns in vast swaths of text harvested from the internet, then further trained with human assistance to deliver more useful, better dialog. The answers you get may sound plausible and even authoritative, but they might well be entirely wrong, as OpenAI warns.
Chatbots have been of interest for years to companies looking for ways to help customers get what they need and to and AI researchers trying to tackle the Turing Test. That's the famous "Imitation Game" that computer scientist Alan Turing proposed in 1950 as a way to gauge intelligence: Can a human conversing with a human and with a computer tell which is which?
But chatbots have a lot of baggage, as companies have tried with limited success to use them instead of humans to handle customer service work. A study of 1,700 Americans, sponsored by a company called Ujet
, whose technology handles customer contacts, found that 72% of people found chatbots to be a waste of time.
This artificial intelligence bot can answer questions and write essays and program computers. But careful how much you trust it.