by Heather Noggle,
UniteNews Contributing Writer
ChatGPT celebrated a birthday in November of 2023. If you haven’t tried it out, now is a good time to interact with the free version. You can find it at chat, openai.com. You’ll have to register the first time you use it.
The world shifts and changes in small parts (and large) each year, and as we enter 2024, it’s good to recognize we have to shift and change along with it.
ChatGPT is just one of those things. We need awareness and sometimes understanding. My favorite thing to do with ChatGPT is to make images, as I can’t draw even a stick figure. But I can use words to tell the program what to build and draw, and – mostly – it’ll do that for me– enough to illustrate my writing.
You may have a job that ChatGPT and other large language models (LLMs) like it can help – kind of like having a robotic arm. In 2023/2024, it’s not replacing jobs, but it can make people more productive if they know how to use it. Like computer searches replacing the library card catalog. You – like me – might remember those.
So much of technology is that way – knowing how it can benefit you and learning a little bit (or a lot) about how to use it. The ChatGPT AI that makes images is called DALL-E 3 and has a monthly price tag of $20 for ChatGPT Plus – for now. But interacting with ChatGPT itself – asking it to summarize key points or help you identify something that’s missing – can help you be more productive and round out your thinking. And that’s free.
Our next generation will need to know how to interact with AI for many jobs. It should help automate the mundane things or help us get “unstuck” when we need another partial brain to move forward. But that takes knowing how to use it.
The future of work is heavily integrated with technology. I’ve mentioned before that with cybersecurity there are a great many free or low-cost courses, and with cybersecurity, a degree isn’t necessary; knowledge is.
AI- and using it effectively is another skill that can be learned online and for free or low cost. So if you have some time, interest, and an Internet connection, explore.
Vanderbilt University has a free Generative AI course. You can find it here: https:// www.coursera.org/learn/prompt-engjneerjng. I took it a few months back and found it helpful the results you get from AI are cleaner with clear prompts.
Google has one, too, but I haven’t taken this one. It looks to be more in-depth. https://collegedunia,com/courses/artificial-intelligence/google-ai-course
When the future arrives, we have a chance to help shape it. Al should reflect collective thinking and creation. The more of us who are involved in that work, the more the future will reflect our contributions. Start learning, and help our young people do the same. Schools may not be ready to embrace ChatGPT and programs like it, but they soon will.
Because they’ll have to.