AI Grows More Powerful While We Become More Predictable

Joseph Dana
4 min readMar 21

With any groundbreaking new technology, the pace of adoption climbs quickly. Over the past two decades, new platforms and tools, from the iPhone to TikTok, have seen progressively faster adoption rates. The adoption rate of ChatGPT, the artificial intelligence (AI) large language model owned by OpenAI, is unlike anything we have ever seen. Within five days of release, the platform had a million unique users.

The spike in new users has led to a deluge of thought pieces and discussions about the future of work in an AI-powered world. The world has been turned upside down with claims that ChatGPT signals the proper start of the AI age. The speedy embrace of AI tools is evident in emerging markets, where companies and governments have almost tripped over themselves to underscore their use of AI. The glaring problem is that platforms like ChatGPT are still in their infancy. While it’s clear many are eager for the AI future to take hold, the fact is that the technology isn’t anywhere close to realizing accurate intelligence or reason.

The human mind has an uncanny ability to use a small amount of data to create thoughts, language, and the ability to reason. Think about the development of language in a baby. Babies develop language with a few cues from family and the surrounding environment. This is a simplified take on language development, but it’s vital for understanding the limitations of ChatGPT when it comes to mimicking human thought. Unlike humans, large language models such as ChatGPT analyze massive data sets and produce content based on guesses about trends in the data it can access. The human mind could never process the data required to make ChatGPT function, nor would it require so much data.

At the heart of OpenAI’s approach to ChatGPT is the notion that human behavior is predictable. By analyzing large data sets, OpenAI’s algorithm can essentially guess what we are thinking or looking for in an answer. While we might have a knee-jerk reaction to the claim that human behavior is predictable, we must consider the effect of nearly two decades of internet and smartphone usage. Our behavior is increasingly predictable because we have allowed algorithms to shape what we read and digest on the internet. Features like Google’s autocomplete in Gmail can accurately predict what we…

Joseph Dana