- ChatGPT has been used by creators, traders and many others to make their jobs easier.
- Despite the excitement surrounding ChatGPT and GPT-4, there are concerns that AI tools are taking over jobs.
- Insider spoke to experts about how artificial intelligence has changed and the hype around ChatGPT.
One of the biggest questions about the future of work in 2023 is how AI tools like ChatGPT will change the way we do our jobs.
Will we be replaced by robots? Will they boost productivity and make everyone richer? Or are they just the latest techno craze doomed to a hype-fueled boom and bust cycle?
Before GPT-4 was unveiled on Tuesday, ChatGPT had “reached an estimated 100 million monthly active users” in January, according to Insider’s Sawdah Bhaimiya. Podcasters, traders, brokers, creators, teachers and job seekers have all used it to save time and effort. It has also been listed as an author or co-author of e-books and has been used by one person to create crochet patterns.
But ChatGPT isn’t the first chatbot or artificial intelligence tool to change the way we work.
So why all the hype?
According to Daniela Rus, professor and director of the Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory at MIT, that’s because it’s the first widely accessible and easy-to-use AI tool for non-experts.
“Its accessibility in the hands of the everyday user has led to extensive discussions about the tool, partly out of fear,” Rus told Insider. “This can be largely unavoidable when people don’t understand how the underlying technology works and what it’s really capable of.”
White-collar workers in particular may be concerned, as the new tools appear to be coming for the kind of knowledge work that has resisted previous rounds of automation.
“Looking back a few years, it seemed that automation in blue-collar jobs like self-driving cars, self-driving trucks would accelerate very quickly. But to some extent, the big language models that advancements in automation have now caught up in pace and are coming at us really, really fast. off,” said Sanjay Patnaik, director of the Center on Regulation and Markets at Brookings, as he introduced a virtual event on Wednesday. “And, interestingly enough, many of those tasks that can actually replace or help augment ChatGPT and large language models are tasks in the white-collar workspace.”
William Lee, chief economist at the Milken Institute, shared a similar thought in an interview with Insider.
“Artificial intelligence can play a role in replacing, or at least reducing, the need for less skilled workers,” Lee said.
For now, what ChatGPT can actually do is quite limited, experts told Insider. While chatbots and other tools that use AI may put some jobs at risk, most users should embrace the chatbot to make their lives easier.
AI’s Myspace or Netscape browser
For JJ Johannes, a real estate agent with a technical background, ChatGPT is what Myspace was to social media. It’s an early, accessible version that other iterations will build on. He uses ChatGPT to help with tasks like writing online mentions and social media posts, which saves him time. He told Insider that “technology is always evolving” and that while “ChatGPT is the catchiest thing right now,” it’s not the only form of AI available and may not be the latest iteration.
IBM CEO Arvind Krishna told the Financial Times that “ChatGPT’s marketing moment is incredible. We’ve seen these moments before: a company called Netscape brought the web browser to everyone’s attention.”
“I mean, Netscape wasn’t a winner in the end, but the Internet certainly was,” Krishna added. “I think what ChatGPT has done [is] helped make AI real for a lot of people who knew about it but maybe didn’t fully see what the power of AI would be.”
“So just realize that the technology will continue to evolve and while ChatGPT is the hot topic of AI, there are many other components to AI and there could be other iterations especially for this input, output that you get from ChatGPT to answer questions said John.
ChatGPT isn’t coming for white-collar workers just yet, but it shows where AI could go
Chatbots are already prevalent in customer service and AI is being used in precision medicine, healthcare and many large tech companies.
Hope Bradford, senior director of digital transformation at Kelly, a staffing and staffing firm, told Insider that AI tools help HR professionals screen candidates. She said they’ve also been used to match resumes with both job titles and descriptions. These tools “keep evolving,” she said, adding that “ChatGPT has now taken it to a whole other level, oh, it’s more than just a matching tool. It does other things.”
The technology is already changing, as can be seen with OpenAI’s recently unveiled GPT-4 major language model. Among the improvements over its predecessors, GPT-4 can “process image and text input and broadcast text output,” according to OpenAI’s website.
“GPT-4 shows how the power of AI is spreading thanks to the scale of data and computing, as well as its ease of use. Its performance on AP exams and a host of other academic and professional standards is very impressive,” said Rus, the MIT graduate. Professor Insiders. “OpenAI has taken several steps to address many of the shortcomings of its previous versions.”
Beyond just chatbots like ChatGPT or new major language models like GPT-4, automation is already strong in the workplace. Lee pointed to automation in assembly lines or in construction.
“I think it’s really in the realm of a white-collar work revolution where the tip of this realm is going to really impact lower-skill jobs,” Lee told Insider.
But ChatGPT doesn’t now.
“At this point, it’s nowhere near ready for real-world use other than entertainment, but the trend is clear that ChatGPT will be the future, or some version of it, for all white-collar workers and even the research world.” said Lee.
“I would class ChatGPT as a smart freshman, and I don’t want a professional to be a smart freshman doing triage at a hospital or intake at a doctor’s office or a law firm,” Lee said in a February interview. .
Will we be replaced by robots? Are white-collar jobs at risk of being cut because of AI tools? What does ChatGPT mean now and for the future? While people have found success and the benefits of AI tools, there is still uncertainty about their future and fears still looming.
“I think over time there’s been a conversation about a lot of cycles of jobs being compromised as automation comes along and how those jobs are evolving, even from the very beginning of the mechanics starting to evolve and actually changing those jobs in other jobs,” said Bradford.