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ChatGPT: What do the stalwarts say?

ChatGPT has taken the tech world by storm since its November launch. In just two months, it amassed over 100 million monthly active users, a feat that took Instagram two and a half years and TikTok nine months to achieve. But as interest in the technology increases, major players in the industry and stalwarts are beginning to express their concerns about the potential for things to go wrong.

Prabhakar Raghavan, Google’s senior vice president and search engine head, recently spoke to the German newspaper Welt am Sonntag about the potential risks associated with AI, saying, “This type of artificial intelligence we’re talking about can sometimes lead to something we call hallucination. It could result in the technology yielding a convincing but completely fictitious answer.”

Google’s own chatbot, Bard, stumbled just last week, getting a simple question wrong in the company’s promotional video. When the error was pointed out, Google’s shares fell by 9% during the trading day, costing the company almost $100 billion of its market value. Even Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak weighed in on the subject, said to CNBC, “The trouble is it does good things for us, but it can make horrible mistakes by not knowing what humanness is.”

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Despite the concerns, some experts still view ChatGPT as an impressive technological breakthrough. Billionaire entrepreneur Mark Cuban has described generative AI technology used in ChatGPT as “the real deal” but has also cautioned that “over time, the decision-making abilities of chatbot-like technologies can be hard to curb or make sense of. Once these things start taking on a life of their own…the machine itself will have an influence, and it will be difficult for us to define why and how the machine makes the decisions it makes, and who controls the machine.”

As AI capabilities improve, misinformation will only get worse, according to Cuban. In an episode of Jon Stewart’s podcast, The Problem With Jon Stewart, he said, “The machine itself will generate more and more of what is perceived as news, and people will believe it.” Cuban’s comments highlight the need for caution and careful consideration when it comes to the development and deployment of AI technology.

While ChatGPT has undoubtedly made significant strides in the field of AI, it’s important to recognize that there is still much that we don’t know about how these technologies will shape our future. As with any emerging technology, it’s essential to weigh the potential benefits against the potential risks and proceed with caution. As Wozniak put it, “We have to be aware that the machines will not always get it right. We have to teach them the important things about life, and that’s a big challenge.”

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