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  • Donald E. Hester

AI Chatbots: A Tool, Not a Human Replacement

AI Chatbots: A Tool, Not a Human Replacement - Observations and Future Applications

Artificial Intelligence (AI) chatbots are becoming increasingly popular, but people's experiences with them have been mixed. Some have reported receiving bizarre responses from chatbots, which could be due to the way they're interacting with them. In my opinion, certain reports that are sensational or provocative in nature may be intended to attract attention or generate clicks. If people treat AI like a human and have a conversation with it, they may be setting themselves up for a disappointing experience. It's important to remember that AI is a tool, and treating it as such can help users get the most out of it.

AI chatbots, such as OpenAI's ChatGPT and Bing, have made it easier for non-technical users to access information. Users don't need to know how to write a query or code. They can simply use natural language commands, but it's important to be specific when doing so. For instance, instead of asking the AI what the meaning of life is, one could ask what Marcus Aurelius would say about the meaning of life. This is what I did.


There are differences between how different chatbots provide information. For example, Bing adds references to some of its responses, and some of them are from authoritative sources like On the other hand, OpenAI does not offer sources even if the user asks for them. It's worth noting that not all information is publicly available, and information behind paywalls may not be included in the responses. This means that if users want the best information, they may not have access to journals or books.

Another issue that can arise when using AI chatbots is historical bias or presentism. For example, when asked OpenAI about the meaning of life, the AI made Marcus Aurelius out to be a social justice advocate, even though he wouldn't have understood the concept as it exists today. This is something that users should be aware of when using AI chatbots.

In terms of response depth, OpenAI's version tends to be more extensive, while Bing's is more concise. However, Bing does offer follow-up questions and suggestions to keep the conversation going, while OpenAI does not.

AI chatbots like OpenAI and Bing also come equipped with plagiarism detectors, which can be useful for academic purposes.

Future Applications of Chat AI

The potential applications of chatbot AI in the future are vast and varied. One area of interest is the integration of AI chatbots into popular applications like Microsoft Word or ERP systems. This integration could be incredibly useful for organizations and application users, as AI could mine through large amounts of data to extract useful insights.

The real power of AI chatbots would be ability to access information that is otherwise behind paywalls. By providing AI chatbots with access to professional journals and books, they could provide more comprehensive responses and better research. It is important to ensure that all information, even conflicting or critical information, is accessible to the AI in order to reduce bias and leverage the collective wisdom of the best research available. Additionally, cross-disciplinary knowledge bases could lead to promising results, as innovation often comes from experts in other fields of study. I think we will see some journal subscriptions will add the chatbot capability to their service soon.

To fully realize the potential benefits of AI chatbots, organizations will need to find new ways to leverage these powerful tools. AI chatbots can be used as personal assistants or in education to assist with learning and writing.

One interesting prediction is that the porn industry may help perfect the "human feel" of chatbots, as the industry has often contributed to technological innovation in unexpected ways. We shall see what the future brings.

According to an article I read, Steve Wozniak believes that while AI can perform tasks that are beyond human capacity, it cannot replace human interaction due to its lack of emotions and inability to form genuine connections with humans. In reference to the Turing test, I question whether it is the most effective method for assessing AI. I also question whether we should aim for AI to appear human. (Not that I wouldn't appreciate a sassy AI like Bender or Chopper.) I suggest that we should evaluate it as a tool rather than a substitute for human beings. We should consider how AI can enhance human life, improve efficiency and effectiveness, and help achieve better results.


I asked Bing and OpenAI's chatbots the same question, "What would Marcus Aurelius say is the meaning of life?" You can see their responses below.


Marcus Aurelius was a Roman emperor and a Stoic philosopher who wrote personal reflections on how to live a virtuous life1. He believed that only virtue is good, only vice is bad, and everything else is indifferent1. He also believed that life is more like wrestling than dancing, since we have to adapt to the circumstances that life throws at us2.

There is no definitive answer to what he would say is the meaning of life, but one possible interpretation is that he would say that the meaning of life is to live according to reason and nature, to act with justice, wisdom, courage and self-control, and to be content with whatever happens13.

What do you think of his philosophy?

Marcus Aurelius was a Roman emperor and philosopher who lived in the 2nd century AD. In his writings, particularly in his book "Meditations", he reflected on the nature of life, the human condition, and the meaning of existence.

According to Marcus Aurelius, the meaning of life is to live in accordance with nature and reason, to cultivate virtue and moral excellence, and to strive for wisdom and self-improvement. He believed that the purpose of life was to develop a deep understanding of oneself and one's place in the world, and to use this understanding to live a life that is guided by reason, ethics, and moral principles.

For Marcus Aurelius, the pursuit of material wealth, pleasure, and status was a distraction from the true purpose of life, and he believed that a meaningful and fulfilling life was one that was dedicated to the cultivation of the virtues of courage, justice, wisdom, and self-control. He saw these virtues as essential to achieving a life of purpose and meaning, and believed that they were at the heart of a just and equitable society.

Overall, Marcus Aurelius's beliefs about the meaning of life emphasize the importance of living in accordance with nature and reason, cultivating virtue and moral excellence, and striving for wisdom and self-improvement. He saw these values as essential to achieving a life of purpose and meaning, and believed that they were at the heart of a just and fulfilling existence.


I did not try Google's Bard as it was not available at the time.

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