Unless you’re my grandmother or have been living under a rock, you’ve probably heard of ChatGPT by now.
The language model developed by OpenAI has been making headlines ever since November 2022, when it was made available to the general public to get users’ feedback. The more positive ones focus on how it can be a great tool for both personal and professional use, while the more negative ones highlight how it can be biased, produce wrong or inaccurate answers, and even replace people at certain jobs. That last part is highly unlikely, but we’ll get to it later.
The truth is, ChatGPT has been making its way into a number of businesses, in one way or another, so it’s the kind of technology you’ll want to keep on your radar.
In this article, we’ll explore what ChatGPT is, how safe it is to use, and how you can make the best of it for your business. Even if you haven’t heard about it before, it will make the concept a bit clearer.
A Brief Introduction to ChatGPT
Let’s start from the very beginning. What is ChatGPT?
ChatGPT is an AI large language model (LLM) developed by OpenAI. It's designed to be able to understand and generate human-like language. This means it can have conversations with people in a way that sounds natural and similar to how humans talk to each other.
The “chat” part of its name is self-explanatory — ChatGPT is a conversational, AI-based chatbot. The GPT in its name stands for “Generative Pre-trained Transformer,” which is a type of AI architecture that's used to train the model.
In simple terms, the model has been pre-trained on a vast amount of text data, like books or web pages, before being fine-tuned on a specific task, in this case, replying to human prompts. This way, when you interact with ChatGPT, it analyzes your input and uses its understanding of language and the patterns it learned from the pre-training data to generate what it thinks is the most appropriate response.
The "GPT" in ChatGPT stands for "Generative Pre-trained Transformer," which is a type of AI architecture that's used to train the model. Essentially, the model has been pre-trained on a massive amount of language and text data (like books, articles, and web pages) to learn patterns and relationships between words and phrases in the English language.
When you interact with ChatGPT, it analyzes your input (whether it's a question, statement, or command) and uses its understanding of language to generate a response that it thinks is most appropriate based on the context of the conversation. The response is generated by considering the context of the conversation and using the patterns it learned from the pre-training data to generate a relevant and coherent response.
GPT-1 to 4
The first version of the GPT model, GPT-1, was introduced in 2018. It was trained on a large dataset of text from the internet and was capable of generating coherent and grammatically correct sentences. However, it struggled to produce meaningful responses to prompts.
GPT-2 was released a year later and was already a significantly more powerful version of the technology. The dataset it was trained on was much larger than the one used for GPT-1, which made it capable of generating coherent and relevant sentences with just a few inconsistencies. GPT-2 was also able to perform a range of natural language processing tasks like translation and text summarization.
GPT-3 was released in 2020 and was, at the time, the most powerful version of the GPT model. It was trained on an even larger dataset than GPT-2. For that reason, it could also perform complex tasks that it couldn’t before, including generating original content.
When OpenAI announced ChatGPT in November 2022, the model had already evolved into an improved version of the model — GPT-3.5.
This version was trained on a mix of text and code published up until the end of 2021 and learned the relationships between words and sentences from web content such as Wikipedia entries, news articles, and social media posts.
For this reason, ChatGPT can engage in conversation about a range of topics, from pop culture:
To writing poetry:
GPT-3.5’s performance is the reason behind the buzz ChatGPT has been generating since its launch.
But Open AI hasn’t stopped there. About a month ago, it announced GPT-4, “more reliable, creative, and able to handle much more nuanced instructions than GPT-3.5.” GPT-4 is a large multimodal model which accepts not just text but also image inputs. In terms of performance, GPT-4 shows improvements in linguistic finesse, information synthesis, creativity and coherence, complex problem-solving, programming power (it’s able to generate code snippets and detect bugs,) and reduction of inappropriate or biased responses.
What Can ChatGPT Do?
According to ChatGPT itself, it can:
- Answer questions: it can provide information on a wide range of topics, from history to science to pop culture.
- Generate text: it can write articles, essays, stories, and more. Just give ChatGPT a topic, and it can generate text on that subject.
- Translation: it can translate text between many different languages.
- Summarization: it can summarize long articles, books, and other texts into shorter, more digestible pieces.
- Chatting: it can chat with you about a variety of topics.
You read that right because, for this section of the article, I asked ChatGPT for help. Who better to explain what it does than the AI itself?
Here’s how the interaction went:
But these are just the main functions you can ask ChatGPT to perform. When it comes to business, there are several applications.
You can use ChatGPT to create a chatbot that can handle basic customer service inquiries, such as answering FAQs, providing product recommendations, and helping customers troubleshoot common issues.
Essentially what a chatbot can do, but with an added layer of AI that helps take its understanding of what customers want to the next level.
ChatGPT can help your business boost sales by assisting your sales team in several tasks. It can provide them with relevant information about your products or services in a quick and effective way (rather than searching for it across different sources), help them qualify leads, and even make personalized product recommendations to potential customers.
As mentioned above, ChatGPT is able to generate different kinds of texts and also summarize existing pieces of content. For marketers, this is a valuable asset that can help them in their daily tasks.
With ChatGPT, you can create targeted content for marketing campaigns, such as blog articles or social media posts. It can suggest headlines and CTAs, and it can also help with less creative tasks like writing emails or analyzing data so that your marketers can focus on the tasks they typically enjoy most.
ChatGPT can analyze larger amounts of data faster than if you were to do it by hand. It can be a useful tool in conducting research and identifying trends and areas that need improvement.
ChatGPT’s Impact on Business
To summarize the few business areas ChatGPT can be used in, you can say that it’s a useful tool that helps automate processes and make certain tasks easier and more efficient.
But just as when automation was becoming a buzzword in the business world — and having us question whether we would still have jobs in 2030 — ChatGPT also brought forth concerns over how far we should push AI development.
In a recent open letter, many people — including OpenAI co-founder Elon Musk — are calling for AI labs to put the training of AI systems more powerful than GPT-4 on hold for at least 6 months. They claim that “powerful AI systems should be developed only once we are confident that their effects will be positive and their risks will be manageable.”
AI labs and independent experts should use this pause to work on shared safety protocols for advanced AI design to prevent the “profound risks” that, according to the letter’s signatories, “AI systems with human-competitive intelligence can pose to society and humanity.”
Whether or not the AI community will reach a consensus on this topic is still unclear, but in the meantime, GPT-like technology is already changing how businesses operate. Even though it’s only been a few months since ChatGPT was launched, companies were quick to adopt the technology.
Duolingo Max is Duolingo’s new subscription tier that gives users access to two new features powered by GPT-4. Slack, possibly the business world’s favorite internal messaging platform, has announced Einstein, a GPT-powered assistant that can draft replies, summarize threads, or do external research without leaving Slack.
Other businesses are launching integrations between their product and ChatGPT. For example, Zendesk is already allowing users to integrate with ChatGPT to summarize conversations in a support app.
And we at Landbot have recently launched Landbot AI, which includes a GPT-3 integration that you can use to quickly build an FAQ chatbot and a Text-to-Bot feature. Simply type in your prompt describing what kind of chatbot you want to build, and it will build it for you.
While concerns over newly and/or constantly developed technology are valid, at least for now, ChatGPT seems to be helping drive business rather than having a negative impact on it.
And the truth is, even if your business is not actively investing in GPT-powered technology or building a product integration with ChatGPT, chances are your employees are still using it to make certain tasks quicker and easier, and better manage their time.
Just look at me — I used it to help me write a section of this article. Instead of skimming through several articles around the web, I asked ChatGPT for information.
There’s no saying what the future of AI is or how it will keep impacting both our personal and professional lives. However, looking at all the businesses taking advantage of ChatGPT at the moment, now seems to be a good time to keep up with the trend.