Albert Einstein once observed that knowing the chemical formula of a chocolate cake won’t make it taste like the one your mother made.
I’m with him. When it comes to human achievement, tech is no substitute for talent. In the past few years I’ve become deeply involved with computer based advances; from Virtual Reality to Linguistic chatbots like ChatGPT and design tools like Midjourney, producing linguistic or graphic images from text prompts.
The novelty of using these tools is fascinating and it’s easy to go down rabbit holes discovering what they can do. As a two finger typist I find ChatGPT to be extraordinarily helpful in taking the drudgery out of setting out research and data.
But it relies totally on being asked the right questions.
If the written prompts are concise and germane, ChatGPT is stupendously fast and accurate in delivering a coherent narrative. Otherwise, it’s the old chestnut of garbage-in-garbage-out.
Just as accounting tools like Xero have transformed Accounting, such AI tools as this are going to put a huge dent in the Teaching profession. Particularly at secondary and tertiary level.
Once a pupil has learned to read and write, ChatGPT is going to make a lot of mediocre teachers redundant.
We already see the battle lines being drawn between machines and men in all manner of business, education, medicine and media realms, with AI disrupting traditional tasks and treasured beliefs as inputs and outputs are done better, faster and cheaper by AI.
What it can’t do – at least at this early stage of development – is add the magic of the human touch. Even at its grammatically and factually correct best, it can’t bake a literary cake with your Mother’s love.
For a dose of human touch, join me on my Facebook page where I’ll do my best to share literary cake even your Mother might enjoy.