Extractive summaries of and key takeaways from the articles curated from TOP TEN BUSINESS MAGAZINES to promote informed business decision-making | Week 289 | March 24-30, 2023
By David Rotman | MIT Technology Review | March 25, 2023
Whether it’s based on hallucinatory beliefs or not, an artificial-intelligence gold rush has started over the last several months to mine the anticipated business opportunities from generative AI models like ChatGPT.
But while companies and executives see a clear chance to cash in, the likely impact of the technology on workers and the economy on the whole is far less obvious. For all the amazing advances in AI and other digital tools over the last decade, their record in improving prosperity and spurring widespread economic growth is discouraging. Although a few investors and entrepreneurs have become very rich, most people haven’t benefited. Some have even been automated out of their jobs.
Productivity growth, which is how countries become richer and more prosperous, has been dismal since around 2005 in the US and in most advanced economies. The fact that the economic pie is not growing much has led to stagnant wages for many people. What productivity growth there has been in that time is largely confined to a few sectors, such as information services, and in the US to a few cities—think San Jose, San Francisco, Seattle, and Boston. Will ChatGPT make the already troubling income and wealth inequality in the US and many other countries even worse? Or could it help? Could it in fact provide a much-needed boost to productivity?
The optimistic view: it will prove to be a powerful tool for many workers, improving their capabilities and expertise, while providing a boost to the overall economy. The pessimistic one: companies will simply use it to destroy what once looked like automation-proof jobs, well-paying ones that require creative skills and logical reasoning; a few high-tech companies and tech elites will get even richer, but it will do little for overall economic growth. Determining which scenario wins out will require a more deliberate effort to think about how we want to exploit the technology.
The good news is that, in fact, we can decide how we choose to use ChatGPT and other large language models. As countless apps based on the technology are rushed to market, businesses and individual users will have a chance to choose how they want to exploit it; companies can decide to use ChatGPT to give workers more abilities—or to simply cut jobs and trim costs.
3 key takeaways from the article
- Whether it’s based on hallucinatory beliefs or not, an artificial-intelligence gold rush has started over the last several months to mine the anticipated business opportunities from generative AI models like ChatGPT.
- But while companies and executives see a clear chance to cash in, the likely impact of the technology on workers and the economy on the whole is far less obvious.
- Despite their limitations—chief among of them their propensity for making stuff up—ChatGPT and other recently released generative AI models hold the promise of automating all sorts of tasks that were previously thought to be solely in the realm of human creativity and reasoning, from writing to creating graphics to summarizing and analyzing data. That has left economists unsure how jobs and overall productivity might be affected.
Topics: Technology, Artificial Intelligence, Global Economy, Employment