We are living in strange and uncertain times, aren’t we? It almost feels as though we’ve found ourselves in the moments before the dawning of a new age, as we come face to face with several of our potentially dystopian fears all at once.
We have a nuclear apocalypse to worry about at the moment, as Russia continues to wave their nuclear arsenal in the face of the world while simultaneously getting spanked in Ukraine.
And then there’s the new technological abyss we’re facing, in which sentient or sentient-adjacent man-made intelligences could begin changing some of the basic realities of the way our world operates.
With a powerful new product called ChatGPT, some of those fears appear to have arrived.
Henry Williams, a freelance writer from London, thinks ChatGPT, a natural language chatbot powered by artificial intelligence, is going to steal his job.
Developed by tech company OpenAI, ChatGPT can complete many tasks in seconds, including writing essays, poems, and even complex code.
Williams tested the advanced software by giving it an article topic similar to the one he had been covering: “What is payment gateway?”
The results were profound.
After entering the prompt, Williams quickly got a response from the chatbot – and it was “impressive,” he writes in an article for The Guardian.
He noted that while the tone was a bit inhuman and the structure resembled an academic essay, the key points, the grammar, and the syntax were on point.
The news comes just months after a now-former Google engineer suggested that one of the company’s chatbots had turned sentient. After the company denied the claims, (and fired the whistleblower), that chatbot hired its own lawyer in an attempt to prove its point.