ChatGPT, an AI text generation tool, launched in November 2022. It had 100 million active users at the beginning of 2023, quickly becoming the fastest-growing app in history.

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So what's all the buzz about?

Some people argue that apps like Chat GPT that use generative AI are the biggest innovation in technology since the smartphone or even the internet.

But what exactly is generative AI? And how do people use it?

What is Generative AI?

Artificial Intelligence or AI is about getting machines to do what humans can do by imitating the human brain.

Generative AI refers to a type of AI that creates new content in the form of text, images, audio, and code. It wasn't until the last 10 years that we've had the amount of data and computers powerful enough for generative AI to advance.

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There are two technological breakthroughs that have allowed generative AI to create content that rivals, or according to some people, is even better than what humans can create.

1) Neural Networks

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Neural networks are mathematical systems that learn skills by finding statistical patterns in enormous amounts of data.

2) Large Language Models

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  • Large language models (L.L.M.s) are neural networks created by tech companies like Google, Microsoft, and Open AI that were trained using extensive amounts of data from places like the internet, academic research, and digital books.

  • L.L.M.s use a transformer architecture that pays attention to how different words and phrases work together. It also is able to evaluate different sets of data at the same time, making it faster and more efficient.

How Does Generative AI work?

  1. Lots of data are collected and broken down into smaller units known as tokens.

  2. A neural network is built and then trained with the "tokenized" data.

  3. Users give the AI system a prompt. Example: "Write a poem about popsicles in the style of Jay-Z."

  4. Using AI algorithms, new content is delivered based on the prompt.

Here's what it looks like in ChatGPT:

Screenshot of poem about popsicles in the style of Jay-Z created by ChatGPT

To hear an audio clip of the lyrics from the poem in Jay Z's voice (generated by Uberduck), click the play button on the audio player below:

What Does Generative AI Do Well?

Here are some of the ways generative AI can be used effectively:

  • Editing written content such as emails, essays, and resumes

  • Writing code

  • Explaining complicated concepts to a variety of audiences

  • Learning a foreign language

  • Generating artwork in a particular style

  • Generating original voiceovers for digital content

  • Designing physical products and buildings

  • Summarizing books and long research papers

  • Creating music in a particular style

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Which of the following would be an effective use of generative AI? Select all that apply.

Generative AI Tools

These are some applications using generative AI that you can try out depending on what you want it to do:

  • Text generation tools: ChatGPT, Jasper, AI-Writer, and Lex

  • Image generation tools: Dall-E 2, Midjourney, and Stable Diffusion

  • Music generation tools: Amper, Dadabots, and MuseNet

  • Code generation tools: CodeStarter, Codex, GitHub Copilot and Tabnine

  • Voice synthesis: Descript, Listnr, and

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Take Action

Generative AI is an exciting new innovation, so why not give it a try or learn more about it!

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