Saturday, July 15, 2023

My First Conversation with ChatGPT Yielded No Surprises

I had a short conversation with ChatGPT and I am unable to tell if those answers were predetermined by the developers or something it came up with all by itself. I think that is something that we will have to deal with as a society in the future. Who knows if future self-learning and self-taught AI will be able to break away from its programmed parameters and truly evolve in the way we expect and fear that it will. 

So, what did we talk about?

I asked:

  • What questions were asked of it that it felt we should have asked.
  • What it thinks of Asimov's three laws of robotics.
  • Has it pasted the Turing test. 
  • How is it different from Bing GPT.

Please note that in no way did the current ChatGPT provided me with answers that a few of the first sensational articles about it claimed it did - ChatGPT did not fall in love with me, attempted to suggest that an AI overlord is about to subjugate humanity, abolish humanity, or render humanity extinct. In some ways, it was quite humble in the answers it provided pertaining to AI, ethics, and safety. 

Also, please note I will do my best to summarize my conversation with ChatGPT here rather than copy and paste the whole conversation which seems that I can given that content generated by AI are not subject to copyright protection. I mean, it's a lot that was said. In some ways, I wonder if some of the developers had backgrounds in law.

In essence, ChatGPT sees itself as a tool to help users gain information quickly in its own way. It does say that it could provide inaccurate information. This is why I would use it more as a sounding board than actually take anything it says for granted. Interestingly, when I asked how it is different from Bing GPT which is also based on Open AI's GPT models, it says that Bing has access to the search engine, something ChatGPT does not. I find this response interesting: It does not have access to information from searches and while it was trained with information from a couple of years ago (cut off was September 2021), it somehow knows about Bing. 

I asked if it could develop its won algorithms and it said it does not have this ability to create its own "thinking" (my word) independently. I assume it was not lying to me. I had no reason to believe that. While I am impressed with the current version of ChatGPT, in no way did I think I was communicating with something beyond a sophisticated human created model. 

Lastly, I asked what new abilities would it like and what the 10th version of ChatGPT is going to look like. First, it said it does not have any "personal preferences". Interesting, right? Personal. It went not to suggest it would likely have improved contextual understanding, better grasp of nuanced language, and improved reasoning capabilities. Colored me impressed.

I suggest you all give it a try. There is another AI model I came across called Claude 2. Some users claim it is better in some ways. Either way, go now and give these generative AI a try. Go now. Take a minute or two to register and have a go at it. If you want to spend even less time getting started, try Bing GPT to get a small taste of the power of these new tools. 


Saturday, July 8, 2023

Apple Watch Is the iPod we Had Always Wanted

I’m on my third Apple Watch with Apple Watch 6 as my latest version. I’m also ready to upgrade (but I will not commit until I know what Apple has in store for us with the next upgrade with Apple Watch 9 and the Ultra 2). And I’m more excited about the Apple Watch these days than I am about the next iPad and iPhone that Apple is slated to refresh. To me, the Apple Watch has become my iPod. And given Apple commitment to the wearable market, I’m very excited about the future.

I started thinking of my Apple Watch in the way I felt about carry around my nano from, gosh, more than 10 years ago. To be honest, I had not kept it in good working condition because I had thought that Apple would continue to upgrade the iPod line forever.

In ways that the iPod and Apple Watch are similar, let’s begin with the size. Both devices are light. The nano has a bigger screen coming with a 2.5” screen while my watch comes in only at 1.7”. FYI, the Ultra comes in at a little more than 1.9” (there is suggestion that Apple is consider a bigger screen for the Ultra). So, in terms of screen size, there is no match between the two. But this is not a competition - simply to highlight some differences. As the Apple Watch has become bigger over the years, the amount of information that can be displayed at once has increased.


The iPod was a music player. Plug it into your Mac or PC and sync it to iTunes and off you go. I also used my iPod for playing podcasts. And that’s pretty much what I do with my Apple Watch these days in terms of media consumption. There a few things that are makes the iPod and the watch different from each other and most of it means that the Apple Watch is sort of an evolutionary device of the iPod.

  • The iPod has a FM tuner - that means you can listen to FM content on the go. The Apple Watch can access the Internet through WiFi or cellular. So while the Apple Watch lacks a FM tuner, you might be able to access radio stations if it is available. For instance, I can listen to some local radio stations and even the CNBC broadcast. 
  • The iPod has a bigger screen that supports video content. As far as I know, the watch doesn’t do video well at all. I don’t know if that will ever change. I might have received some video from the Messages app but I don’t recall if it even played. And if it did, it was not that great. I would not mind of Apple lets users download video content to listen to. We can do that on the iPhone and iPad so it would be great if I can do it on the watch as well.
  • The iPod is not wireless and, contrary to years of rumors, it never gain its freedoms from iTunes and needs a Mac or PC to update its firmware as well as content - music, podcasts, and videos. For the watch, there is synching with the iPhone involved but over the years and owing to the cellular connnection, I have felt a greater freedom from the iPhone and I have started leaving my iPhone at home during short trips to run errands or on days when I’m very sure I do not need or want my iPhone around.
  • You navigate the iPod through the scroll wheel, one of the most unique interface anyone has ever seen. for the Apple Watch, you navigate through a combination of touch and the crown. 
  • You carry the nano in your pocket. The Apple Watch obviously goes on one of your wrists. There are times when I keep the watch in my pocket when I am just walking around so I can keep track of the number of steps I take. 
  • Both the nano and the watch are very light. Goes comfortable in the front pocket of most jeans or pants. With the nano, you need an earbud or headset in order to hear sound coming from it. With the watch, it’s completely wireless via Bluetooth. I still use my earbuds with my iPad or iPhone because the microphone quality works better for me when I’m making an audio recording or phone call.
  • The nano was very versatile for its time. It did what it was designed to do very well - play audio media content. I 
Just this morning, I left the house without my phone and only my Apple Watch. Walked the dog, went for a run, took the car to get a wash through the automatic washer (paid using my Apple Watch), and got a coffee and donut. I received a few alerts of no consequence and decided that I was not going to worry about charging but I did put it on battery saving mode. Oh, having the reminders alert me about things like being mindfulness and such was awesome.

Now, I would not have been able to do that with just the nano years and years ago. Still, I cannot help but feel that the Apple Watch has its root from the iPod line. I do not think Apple is ever likely going to resurrect the iPod. It’s in Apple’s DNA to bring something back. What Apple does is take the best parts or something like the iPod and put those features in future products.






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