Like everyone else, I was blown away by ChatGPT, the machine learning oracle from OpenAi, a California-based start-up.
Being a tech enthusiast, I have always kept watch on the latest developments in the world of artificial intelligence. I was fascinated by the concept of chatbots, and I watched with wonder when Midjourney rolled out its beta that generated stunning visuals on command.
But nothing prepared me for what OpenAi would unleash in November 2022. I was simply awestruck by the chatbot’s ability to answer complex questions in what looks like natural-language conversations. The responses were alarmingly lucid and even well-informed. Not just that, it can also perform fun tasks like writing rap songs and sonnets.
OpenAi pulled off this remarkable feat by feeding millions of English academic papers, news articles, books and social media posts into GPT, the programme powering ChatGPT, to learn the patterns that form the English language.
Along with wild amazement, there are deep fears that the chatbot will obsolete many jobs, giving rise to unemployment. But I do not have any such trepidations – in fact, I could not be more thrilled by the potentialities ChatGPT can unleash.
Obviously, jobs such as customer service, data entry, data analysis, and content generation could be replaced by ChatGPT. What takes 3x human hours could be performed by ChatGPT in 0.5x hours. There are some services with respect to financial industries, such as fraud detection, research reports, data analysis, loan origination, wealth management, ensuring compliance and risk management, which will also be taken over by ChatGPT in the coming days.
I am pretty sure that all these services will be accelerated, which ChatGPT will start to use here in this field so that the efficiency will be enhanced. So financial services products and offers will be different.
But this is for the better as it would give a massive productivity boost. It would free up resources to allocate to issues that truly matter and can provide a far superior experience for one and all.
Right now, we cannot precisely say when ChatGPT will make inroads into Bangladesh’s financial market. But definitely, in future, it will help companies like Nagad better their products and services.
Many fear that it will also replace tech jobs, such as software developers, web developers, computer programmers, coders and data scientists – all vocations that are in hot demand now. But I beg to differ.
These jobs will always be needed. As AI is deployed on a large scale, there will be a demand for people with the skills and knowledge to develop, maintain and manage these systems. After all, it is people with these skill sets that came up with the programme in the first place.
What ChatGPT and its ilks, including Jasper Chat, YouChat and Google’s Bard, would definitely do is take over those jobs that require the services of not just any human beings but humans with a certain level of formal education. The machines would be able to perform tasks more efficiently than humans.
So, what would those people do? Well, the only constant in life is change. For survival, we need to evolve, as has been the case since the beginning of time. Given Microsoft’s recent investment of $10 billion in OpenAI and Google’s launch of its own generative AI programme Bard, it seems we are approaching the era of machines.
We should all view this looming threat to our livelihoods as a chance to upskill ourselves. Machines can crunch numbers, do basic research and perform knowledge-based tasks, but what they can never provide are deep insight, human judgement, lateral thinking, execution and common sense.
If I could give one piece of advice to our youth, it would be this: invest in yourself as you would in a DPS (deposit pension scheme) and garner problem-solving, critical thinking skills, and the ability to see the big picture. Make yourself irreplaceable. We should not fear AI tools; we need to take advantage of them.
I am personally thrilled by the opportunities that generative AI presents for Nagad and fintech in general. For instance, we can harness chatbots like ChatGPT’s exceptional ability to crunch numbers with relative accuracy to provide credit products to our underserved population, for whom the gateway to finance remains mostly bolted.
The recent advancement made by ChatGPT is such an exciting development. So much that I would compare it to the palpable astonishment and reverence that was felt when Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin landed Apollo 11 on the moon.
[The author is the founder and managing director of Nagad]