Sunday, January 29, 2023

Hard For Me...

 I like to write. I do it even if I never show it to anyone. It makes me calm and happy (usually). But I am a converted Luddite given ChatGPT. You may ask what ChatGPT is? It is a artificial intelligence Chat creating machine that can write short stories or essays in a natural voice. It can also write in (say) the style of Willie Nelson, or Alexander Hamilton, or Taylor Swift.

And it's writing may need a little editing, but mine needs a lot :-).

And it has taken the wind out of my sails. What fun is writing when you compare to a machine? It is like asking 63 year old me to race against 19 year old Usain Bolt. hatGPT is not only a better writer but can churn out millions, probably billions of stories by the time my Word comes up.

And we will all use ChatGPT soon, if not months, then in just a couple of years. Teachers already see essays that are great and they are trying to understand how to use ChatGPT in school.

Where does it leave writers - and readers. If you can create better stories by computers, why buy books? And if you can listen to computer generated books, read by famous computer generated voices, why wouldn't you do that. 

But the beauty of books is that are not interactive. Their unique stories are meant to be consumed with imagination and awe. 

There is very little awe in reading  story, no matter how great, generated by a computer. You know the manipulation and pacing is set by someone who isn't human, but knows where the optimal place and emotions should go. If you don't believe me, think of Marvel Superhero movies. There is the same pacing, the same - the hero is "almost" defeated, then gets his (usually a his) strength at the end to come back and win.

Every time. "Somehow" the same almost dead / miraculously gets better scene ends every single Marvel movie. Kids get used to it and that is all they want to see now. Other stories are "boring" or slow. Now imagine that same type of training with writing.

Some Sci-Fi stories have protagonists that can't read. The people in these stories ask their phones or ear pieces or computers to read aloud passages from something very much like google. I thought that maybe, some day, something like this might happen. But not this fast, and not everyone.

I fear / think / dread reading going the same way as cursive writing. Quaint by not particularly useful.

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