When I was young, Steve Jobs famously called computers “bicycles for the mind,” and the metaphor helped explain why computers are so useful to human beings. Bicycles help humans conserve energy from one step to the next, which is why they are the best walkers in the animal kingdom (along with turtles and whales).
If we can expand our human perception augmented with AI knowledge, it will be like a bicycle for the mind – an incredibly valuable tool that can change the way we work. It can also help us rebuild and re-weave our social fabric. If we allow individual autonomy, choice, and hospitality, we can connect humanity more deeply and build communities that are rooted in humanity.
What is Generative Language Technology?
Generative linguistics is a subfield of linguistics that is based on the theory of generative grammar, developed by linguist Noam Chomsky. It aims to understand how natural languages work, and how they can be used for communication in real life.
It is a theoretical framework that is able to account for the grammatical structure of any language using a set of rules. The main component of generative linguistics is syntax, but it also covers other areas such as phonology, morphology, and semantics.
Traditional generative grammar is predicated on the notion that syntactic combinatoriality and meaning are derived from each other, in an explicit mapping of tiers of combinations between words (phonology/morphology) and their meanings (semantics). This model was popularized by Chomsky in his 1957 book Syntactic Structures.
However, this model fails to account for how humans generate and use sentences in their own minds. For example, it is not possible to describe the way English questions are formed by simply moving a verb from the left of the sentence to the beginning.
A newer model, called Parallel Architecture (PA), focuses on how language is generated in the human mind and argues that syntax (the rules that govern how words are combined to form phrases, sentences, etc.) is not as fundamental to the emergence of language as phonology or semantics are.
PA is a more mathematically explicit theory than Chomsky’s traditional model, incorporating the ideas of HPSG and its descendants into an integrated framework that combines syntactic, phonological, and semantic components, extending and interconnecting them through specified interface rules.
Another important feature of generative grammar is its focus on Universal Grammar, which claims that all human languages are rooted in an innate language faculty that is unique to human beings. This idea is controversial, because it makes the study of language a cognitive process, and not a socio-cultural one.
Nevertheless, the ability to generate language opens up huge opportunities for value creation in all industries. From content development and marketing copywriting to healthcare and customer service, generative AI is poised to revolutionize how people interact, automating several time-consuming tasks.
The emergence of ChatGPT
ChatGPT is a new, highly-advanced AI-powered chatbot that uses an incredibly large language model to create human-like responses. It’s a big step forward for the field, and it’s an opportunity for businesses to improve their customer experience.
The tool can be used to build chatbots that respond to questions about a product, provide recommendations, or complete transactions. It can also be incorporated into marketing campaigns to provide customers with personalized experiences, increase engagement and drive sales.
There are many benefits of incorporating AI into your business, including improved efficiency, reduced costs, and increased market differentiation. Automating repetitive tasks frees up human employees to focus on more valuable tasks and provides a more efficient work environment.
In the travel industry, ChatGPT can be used to help travelers plan trips and identify hotels based on their preferences. It can also help to reduce the number of calls to a customer service agent, which saves companies a lot of money.
But the tool isn’t without its problems. The tech isn’t trained to provide accurate answers, and it can also generate bias or spread misinformation. Some schools are banning it from their devices and networks, including St. Paul Public Schools and Robbinsdale Schools in Minnesota, and colleges are considering similar measures.
Academics are concerned that it could be a cheating tool. Some fear that it could skew learning by making students write essays and poems that don’t reflect their actual thinking. Others worry that it could make blatant mistakes, like failing to solve simple math equations or logic problems.
Other worries include that it could encourage a culture of “cookie-cutter” writing. That’s a problem because it can also create a generation of students who don’t think critically or creatively.
It can also be a source of bias, since it may be programmed to write in certain styles. That’s a problem for students in the arts and other creative fields, where the output can be too similar to what they produce.
ChatGPT works better with a Human in the Driving Chair
In many workplace settings, ergonomics are taken into consideration to help ensure optimal comfort and productivity. For example, seating in an office is designed to reduce neck and shoulder pain. This includes adjustable heights, distance from the screen, and other elements that accommodate different postures throughout the day. A similar design concept can be seen in Nissan’s ProPILOT Chair, which uses autonomous technology to detect and follow the person behind it. This human-like approach to self-driving is part of Intelligent Mobility, a companywide initiative to improve road safety and driver productivity.
We see this not just in the legal field, but in other professional fields. For example, as health care continues to evolve and AI becomes an integral part of patient care, physicians need to be aware of how to use this technology responsibly in their practice. The AMA has developed guidance to assist them in this endeavor. Check out the AMA’s new paper Trustworthy Augmented Intelligence in Health Care to learn more about this topic. The AMA is working to ensure that this technology is used wisely and effectively for the benefit of all patients. It has the ability to make a significant impact on our world, but only if we are willing to work together to ensure that it is applied in an ethical and responsible manner.
Likely Uses of ChatGPT in the Legal Industry
As a language model, ChatGPT can be useful for lawyers to respond to client inquiries and follow up with clients. Here are some ways in which ChatGPT can be used in these situations:
- Responding to client inquiries: ChatGPT can be used to draft responses to common client inquiries such as questions about the legal process, legal terminology, and legal rights. By using ChatGPT, lawyers can ensure that their responses are accurate and consistent, and can save time by not having to type out responses from scratch each time.
- Providing legal advice: While ChatGPT cannot provide legal advice in the traditional sense, it can help lawyers to generate ideas for legal strategies and to identify potential legal issues that may arise in a particular case. Lawyers can use ChatGPT to generate a list of questions to ask clients during an initial consultation or to brainstorm possible legal arguments that can be used in a case.
- Following up with clients: ChatGPT can be used to send follow-up emails to clients, reminding them of upcoming deadlines, providing updates on the status of their cases, and answering any additional questions they may have. By automating these follow-up messages, lawyers can ensure that clients are kept informed and up-to-date on their cases without having to spend extra time and effort on administrative tasks.
However, it is important to note that while ChatGPT can be a useful tool for lawyers, it should not be relied upon as a substitute for legal expertise or human judgment. It is still important for lawyers to review and edit any responses generated by ChatGPT to ensure that they are accurate and appropriate for the specific situation.
ChatGPT is a powerful tool, but it works best when it is used in conjunction with human expertise and judgment. While ChatGPT can generate responses to client inquiries and follow-up messages, it is not a replacement for the unique knowledge and experience that a human lawyer can bring to a case.
There are several reasons why a human-in-the-driving-chair approach is important when using ChatGPT in a legal context:
- Accuracy: While ChatGPT is trained on large amounts of data and can generate generally accurate responses, it is not perfect. There may be situations where ChatGPT generates an inaccurate response, or where the response is technically correct but not applicable to the specific situation. A human lawyer can review the response and make any necessary corrections or adjustments to ensure that the information is accurate and relevant to the client’s needs.
- Ethics: Lawyers have a duty to provide competent and ethical representation to their clients. While ChatGPT can assist with generating responses, it cannot make ethical judgments or apply legal rules in a nuanced way. A human lawyer can review the response and ensure that it is consistent with ethical and legal standards.
- Context: ChatGPT works by analyzing patterns in large amounts of data, but it may not always take into account the unique context of a particular client’s situation. A human lawyer can review the response and ensure that it takes into account all relevant factors, including the client’s specific needs, goals, and circumstances.
Increasingly we’re seeing technologies combine in ways that would have been unimaginable even just a few years ago. From your smartphone to your smart home appliances, technology is bringing together all manner of things.
However, technological convergence is also a cause for concern. Convergence brings alliances between industries that were previously isolated, and this can impact regulating agencies that were once separate.
In conclusion, while ChatGPT can be a useful tool for lawyers to respond to client inquiries and follow up with clients, it should be used in conjunction with human expertise and judgment to ensure that the responses are accurate, ethical, and contextually appropriate.