Thursday, July 18, 2024

The Synthetic Professor - Ray Schroeder, Inside Higher Ed

The role of the college professor has evolved over the centuries, but several core responsibilities have remained central to the position for many years. The four-part mission of tenure-track faculty at many colleges and universities continues to include teaching, advising, research and service. Emphases among these areas vary with the individual and institution. Now generative AI has arrived on the scene with the ability to assist with most all of the work that a traditional professor does. 

With AI, we need both competition and safety - Tom Wheeler and Blair Levin, Brookings

Regulatory oversight of AI must encourage collaboration on AI safety without enabling anticompetitive alliances. Regulation must close the gaps in voluntary commitments with an AI safety model that includes a supervised process to develop standards, a market that rewards firms who exceed standards, and ongoing oversight of compliance activities.

Wednesday, July 17, 2024

Humane leaders quit to form a fact-checking Search Engine! - Martin Crowely, AI Tool Report

Following a disastrous launch, with scathing customer reviews, AI Pin company, Humane, has lost two of its key leaders: Strategic Partnerships Lead, Brooke Hartley Moy and Head of Product Engineering, Ken Kocienda, who have left to start their own company–called Infactory–which has nothing to do with AI hardware. Infactory is an AI-powered fact-checking search engine, with a difference. Unlike Google’s AI Overviews, which uses AI to provide information summaries, Infactory uses AI to pull information from a variety of trusted sources (citations included). They are prioritizing quality data over general content sources to ensure answers are accurate and not hallucinogenic.

My trip to the frontier of AI education - Bill Gates, Gates Notes

In May, I had the chance to visit the First Avenue Elementary School, where they’re pioneering the use of AI education in the classroom. The Newark School District is piloting Khanmigo, an AI-powered tutor and teacher support tool, and I couldn’t wait to see it for myself. I’ve written a lot about Khanmigo on this blog. It was developed by Khan Academy, a terrific partner of the Gates Foundation. And I think Sal Khan, the founder of Khan Academy, is a visionary when it comes to harnessing the power of technology to help kids learn. We’re still in the early days of using AI in classrooms, but what I saw in Newark showed me the incredible potential of the technology.

Tuesday, July 16, 2024

Morehouse to use AI teaching assistants this fall - Wilborn P. Nobles III, Axios

Morehouse College is planning to use AI teaching assistants to help crack the code of education. Why it matters: Morehouse professor Muhsinah Morris says every professor will have an AI assistant in three to five years. Morris says the technology has taken off in the last 24 months faster than it has in the last 24 years. Meanwhile, baby boomers are leaving the workforce amid national teacher shortages and burnout.
How it works: Morehouse professors will collaborate with technology partner VictoryXR to create virtual 3D spatial avatars. The avatars use OpenAI to have two-way oral conversations with students.

These free ChatGPT apps will analyze data, copyedit text, and improve productivity - Jeremy Caplan, Fast Company

To use ChatGPT more creatively, you can now pick from thousands of free apps called “GPTs.” Each AI app has a special super power. GPTs can help you create images, diagrams, and videos, or get help with negotiating, designing, or presenting. Read on for my favorites and how to make the most of these Custom GPTs.

Monday, July 15, 2024

Will UBI Solve AI Job Disruption? - Julia McCoy,

In an age of total automation, what if money was considered a basic right to life - a stewardship we all took part in? Universal Basic Income (UBI) is a social welfare concept that’s never been implemented successfully on a wide scale. Could UBI be necessary in an economy not driven by human production, but run by AI? In the next decade, for the FIRST time in history, humans won't have to work to see consistent production occur to fuel consumption. This necessitates a massive change in economics – an entire overhaul. I believe we have to be open to whatever will work best to help humans thrive in the AI age, no matter if it has a stigma attached to it, if it comes from a party we typically disagree with, etc. I've challenged my own viewpoints on many things as I learned about the true history of UBI.

Mind-reading AI recreates what you're looking at with amazing accuracy - Michael LePage, New Scientist

Artificial intelligence systems can now create remarkably accurate reconstructions of what someone is looking at based on recordings of their brain activity. These reconstructed images are greatly improved when the AI learns which parts of the brain to pay attention to. “As far as I know, these are the closest, most accurate reconstructions,” says Umut Güçlü at Radboud University in the Netherlands.

Sunday, July 14, 2024

AI at Work Is Here. Now Comes the Hard Part - Microsoft and LinkedIn 2024 Trend Index Annual Report

The data is in: 2024 is the year AI at work gets real. Use of generative AI has nearly doubled in the last six months,1 with 75% of global knowledge workers using it. And employees, struggling under the pace and volume of work, are bringing their own AI to work. While leaders agree AI is a business imperative, many believe their organization lacks a plan and vision to go from individual impact to applying AI to drive the bottom line. The pressure to show immediate ROI is making leaders inert, even in the face of AI inevitability.

What does it mean for students to be AI-ready? - David Joyner, Times Higher Education

Not everyone wants to be a computer scientist, a software engineer or a machine learning developer. We owe it to our students to prepare them with a full range of AI skills for the world they will graduate into, writes David Joyner. Too often, traditional education prepares students for the worlds into which their schools and universities emerged, not the world they exist in now. Part of AI literacy will be ensuring students are ready to interrogate the content they consume; coexisting with AI will mean understanding how it influences what we see.

Saturday, July 13, 2024

Gradually, then Suddenly: Upon the Threshold Small improvements can lead to big changes - ETHAN MOLLICK, One Useful Thing

At some point, the current wave of AI technologies will hit their limits and progress will slow, but no one knows when this will occur. Until that happens, it is worth contemplating the concluding lines to OpenAI’s new paper on using AI to debug AI code: “From this point on, the intelligence of LLMs… will only continue to improve. Human intelligence will not.” We know this may not be true forever, but, in the meantime, the steady improvement in AI ability is less important than the thresholds of change. Keep an eye on the thresholds.

Home Quantum Computer Emulator Launched on Kickstarter - Bernice Baker, IOT World Today

Australian researchers have developed what they say is the first consumer quantum computing product that can be purchased on Kickstarter for less than $400. About the same size and shape as an Amazon Echo Dot puck, the Quokka is said to emulate a fault-tolerant, 30-qubit quantum computer. It connects to a regular laptop or desktop computer via a USB cable. and features the smiling face of its namesake marsupial. Currently in pilot trials, the system has been brought to market by Eigensystem, a spinout from the Center for Quantum Software and Information (QSI) at the University of Technology Sydney.

Friday, July 12, 2024

OpenAI Scale Ranks Progress Toward `Human-Level' Problem Solving - Rachel Metz, Bloomberg

OpenAI executives told employees that the company believes it is currently on the first level, according to the spokesperson, but on the cusp of reaching the second, which it calls “Reasoners.” This refers to systems that can do basic problem-solving tasks as well as a human with a doctorate-level education who doesn’t have access to any tools.  According to the levels OpenAI has come up with, the third tier on the way to AGI would be called “Agents,” referring to AI systems that can spend several days taking actions on a user’s behalf. Level 4 describes AI that can come up with new innovations. And the most advanced level would be called “Organizations.”

Co-Intelligence: How to Live and Work with AI - Ethan Mollick and Stefano Puntoni, Knowledge at Wharton

 “The best way to work with it is to treat it like a person, so you’re in this interesting trap,” said Mollick, co-director of the Generative AI Lab at Wharton. “Treat it like a person and you’re 90% of the way there. At the same time, you have to remember you are dealing with a software process.” This anthropomorphism of AI often ends in a doomsday scenario, where people envision a robot uprising. Mollick thinks the probability of computers becoming sentient is small, but there are “enough serious people worried about it” that he includes it among the four scenarios sketched out in his new book, Co-Intelligence: Living and Working with AI.

Thursday, July 11, 2024

AI fast-tracks software tasks - McKinsey

Generative AI (gen AI) tools can significantly increase the productivity of software product managers, especially for content-heavy tasks. Research by senior partner Chandra Gnanasambandam and coauthors finds that when using gen AI programs, product managers can complete certain tasks, such as writing press releases and creating product backlogs, in 40 percent less time than they would without the tools. However, gen AI capabilities have a smaller impact on content-light tasks, such as gathering and summarizing data for presentations, reducing time spent by 15 percent.

Runway ML Gen-3 The King of AI VIDEO is here. It's all over... - Wes Roth, YouTube

In this podcast edition, Wes Roth digs into the state of the art in text-to-video tools. His focus is on RunwayML  Roth rates videos and compares details within the images. Of particular note is the final quarter of the video where he examines the text-prompt terms along with the visuals that those terms actually generate.  

Wednesday, July 10, 2024

Can AI and Data Analytics Create More Personalised Educational Journeys? - ET Education

Educational institutions are increasingly finding creative and impactful ways to utilise AI and data analytics, breaking away from traditional methods and exploring new possibilities. Adv. Suyash Vijay Pradhan who is Vice Principal of Satish Pradhan Dnyanasadhana College, Thane shared how their institution uniquely utilises data analytics. While data analytics is commonly used for admissions to determine student placement and interests, their approach includes two noteworthy features.He also expressed, how his university is using robots for absent professors and the college's CS/IT department is developing a robot that can substitute for absent professors, ensuring that academic activities remain unaffected. Secondly, the institution emphasises energy conservation, using data analytics to identify areas for cost reduction and reallocating resources to benefit students.

AI and Higher Education III – AI and Research - University World News

Research that uses generative AI is expanding rapidly across fields, and is accelerating and transforming scientific knowledge. For three months University World News has published a weekly series of articles on ‘AI and Research’, exploring the multiplying ways in which AI is involved in higher education research, and culminating in this Special Report. The growing integration of AI tools is catalysing a new era of ‘human-AI collaboration’ in research, signalling a profound shift in how academics approach their scholarly work. This shift is not just about increasing productivity and scale – it represents a fundamental change in the research paradigm.

Tuesday, July 09, 2024

Best AI image generators of 2024 - Ryan Morrison, Tom's Guide

In less than two years we’ve gone from tools like Midjourney being able to create a low-resolution, barely recognizable depiction of a human to high definition, photorealistic images you can barely distinguish from those taken with a camera. We also now have inpainting, consistent character and upscaling tools from StabilityAI, well utilized by companies like Leonardo and NightCafe, as well as text on images from OpenAI in DALL-E 3 and Ideogram, the AI startup from former Google engineers.

Gen-3 Alpha: Available Now - Runway

Gen-3 Alpha is the first of an upcoming series of models trained by Runway on a new infrastructure built for large-scale multimodal training. It is a major improvement in fidelity, consistency, and motion over Gen-2, and a step towards building General World Models. All of the videos linked below were generated with Gen-3 Alpha with no modifications.

Watch this astounding view generated from text in Gen-3 Alpha.

Monday, July 08, 2024

Bill Gates Reveals Superhuman AI Prediction - Bill Gates, The Next Big Idea

Bill Gates has played a leading role in every major tech development over the last half-century, and he’s got a pretty good track record when it comes to forecasting the future. Back in 1980, he predicted that one day there’d be a computer on every desk; today on the show, he says there will soon be an AI agent in every ear. In this episode of the Next Big Idea podcast, host Rufus Griscom and Bill Gates are joined by Andy Sack and Adam Brotman, co-authors of an exciting new book called “AI First.” Together, they consider AI’s impact on healthcare, education, productivity, and business. They dig into the technology’s risks. And they explore its potential to cure diseases, enhance creativity, and usher in a world of abundance.

The the root cause behind evils is scarcity, which can be solved with AGI - Julia McCoy, YouTube

Once again, Julia McCoy digs down into the key elements of change that we are experiencing with the advent of AGI/ASI (artificial general intelligence/artificial super intelligence) in the 4IR (fourth industrial revolution).  She emphasizes that a world of AGI could mean an end to scarcity.  AGI will assist us in solving many of the negative challenges that we face.

Sunday, July 07, 2024

How will AI Impact Racial Disparities in Education? - Hoang Pham, et al; Stanford Center for Racial Justice

AI’s rapid expansion in society has had a profound impact on our education system. Although education technology has been implemented in K-12 schools for decades, this more recent wave involving generative AI has brought significant optimism about how AI can transform education and improve outcomes for the most marginalized students, especially while schools still try to recover from learning loss caused by remote learning during the COVID-19 pandemic. Yet, many have also expressed grave concerns about the dangers of AI in education, including its potential to exacerbate already persistent inequalities.

ChatGPT Forces Universities To Adapt Or Retreat - Dan Fitzpatrick, Forbes

Some institutions are taking action to mitigate the perceived threat. The University of Glasgow is transitioning from open-book online exams back to in-person exams that are invigilated, for third and fourth-year Life Science students. The university's aim is to assure students, accreditation bodies and future employers that the grades awarded are a true reflection of students' knowledge and abilities. While this approach may safeguard against immediate concerns, it raises questions about whether reverting to traditional methods prepares students for a world where AI is increasingly ubiquitous. Many educators see this moment as an opportunity for transformative change. They argue that instead of retreating to outdated methods, universities should embrace this challenge as a catalyst for innovation in assessment practices.

Saturday, July 06, 2024

Broadening the Gains from Generative AI: The Role of Fiscal Policies - Fernanda Brollo, et al; International Monetary Fund

Generative artificial intelligence (gen AI) holds immense potential to boost productivity growth and advance public service delivery, but it also raises profound concerns about massive labor disruptions and rising inequality. This note discusses how fiscal policies can be employed to steer the technology and its deployment in ways that serve humanity best while cushioning the negative labor market and distributional effects to broaden the gains. Given the vast uncertainty about the nature, impact, and speed of developments in gen AI, governments should take an agile approach that prepares them for both business as usual and highly disruptive scenarios.

The ingenuity of generative AI - IBM

Generative AI has seemed almost too good to be true. It cuts coding time from days to minutes, personalizes products down to the tiniest detail, and spots security vulnerabilities almost as soon as they appear. And it’s helped skyrocket AI ROI from 13% to 31% since 2022. While this largely reflects the success of pilots, sandbox experimentation, and other small-scale investments, these early results have business leaders rethinking what’s possible. Our latest proprietary survey of 5,000 executives across 24 countries and 25 industries reveals that most executives are more optimistic about the generative AI opportunity than they were last year. More than three in four (77%) say gen AI is market ready, up from just 36% in 2023, and nearly two-thirds (62%) now say gen AI is more reality than hype.

Friday, July 05, 2024

AI can beat university students, study suggests - Ian Youngs, BBC News

University exams taken by fake students using artificial intelligence beat those by real students and usually went undetected by markers, in a limited study. University of Reading researchers created 33 fictitious students and used AI tool ChatGPT to generate answers to module exams for an undergraduate psychology degree at the institution. They said the AI students' results were half a grade boundary higher on average than those of their real-life counterparts. And the AI essays "verged on being undetectable", with 94% not raising concerns with markers.

ChatGPT 5: What to Expect and What We Know So Far - AutoGPT by Mindstream

Another anticipated feature is the AI’s improved learning and adaptation capabilities. ChatGPT-5 will be better at learning from user interactions and fine-tuning its responses over time to become more accurate and relevant. So when can we expect ChatGPT 5? Late 2024 or Early 2025!  The enhancements in ChatGPT-5 are not just theoretical but have practical implications that can transform various sectors:

Content Creation
With enhanced capabilities, ChatGPT 5 could be a valuable tool for writers, helping generate high-quality articles, scripts, and creative content with ease. It could assist in brainstorming ideas and refining drafts.
Personalized tutoring and interactive learning tools could adapt more closely to individual student needs with ChatGPT 5. It most likely would offer tailored explanations and interactive learning experiences.

Thursday, July 04, 2024

Collaborate with Claude on Projects - Anthropic

Our vision for Claude has always been to create AI systems that work alongside people and meaningfully enhance their workflows. As a step in this direction, Pro and Team users can now organize their chats into Projects, bringing together curated sets of knowledge and chat activity in one place—with the ability to make their best chats with Claude viewable by teammates. With this new functionality, Claude can enable idea generation, more strategic decision-making, and exceptional results. Projects are available on for all Pro and Team customers, and can be powered by Claude 3.5 Sonnet, our latest release which outperforms its peers on a wide variety of benchmarks. Each project includes a 200K context window, the equivalent of a 500-page book, so users can add all of the relevant documents, code, and insights to enhance Claude’s effectiveness.

Survey Suggests Trend Toward Use of AI in Legal Education - Johnny Jackson, Diverse Education

About 55% of law schools that responded reported that they offer classes dedicated to teaching students about AI. Eighty-three percent of responding law schools reported the availability of curricular opportunities for students to learn how to use AI tools effectively. About 85% are contemplating changes to their curricula in response to the increasing prevalence of AI tools. The survey also found that 69% of institutions have adapted their academic integrity policies in response to generative AI. But 62% of law school had not decided how to approach the use of generative AI by applicants.

Wednesday, July 03, 2024

AI Reshapes Higher Ed and Society at Large by 2035 - Ray Schroeder, Inside Higher Ed

There are important steps to be taken in higher education as we prepare for the deep societywide changes that will take place in the next five to 10 years. Almost certainly the fall 2025 semester, or shortly thereafter, we will see the expanding use of generative AI as instructors. We already rely on apps to help us construct course syllabi, learning outcomes, grading rubrics and much more. AI conducts discussion boards, serves as tutors such as Khanmigo and orchestrates adaptive learning. The advent of synthetic instructors, perhaps supervised at first by human “master instructors,” will create a notable milestone along the way of AI progress in higher education.  The premise of our system of colleges and universities is founded on teaching and learning for humans. If the workforce of the educated and skilled drops by nearly half, there would seem to be implications for our institutions.

A New Guide for Responsible AI Use in Higher Ed - Lauren Coffey, Inside Higher Ed

Generative artificial intelligence holds “tremendous promise” in nearly every facet of higher education, but there need to be guardrails, policies and strong governance for the technology, according to a new report. The report from MIT SMR Connections, a subsection within MIT Sloan Management Review, classifies itself as a “strategy guide” for responsibly using generative AI in higher ed. It points toward several institutional practices that have reaped positive results in the last two years, following the debut of ChatGPT in November 2022, which kicked off a flood of AI tools and applications. 

Tuesday, July 02, 2024

Six Ways to Address the AI Leadership Deficit - Russell Reynolds

In the six months since we first asked leaders about generative artificial intelligence (GenAI), confidence in the technology’s potential has remained high. According to Russell Reynolds Associates’ most recent Global Leadership Monitor, there’s significant enthusiasm around how AI might revolutionize organizations, with 74% of leaders reporting excitement around AI’s potential to dramatically improve team productivity, and 58% believing in AI’s potential to create new revenue streams in their organization (Figure 1). And while it’s impossible to avoid wondering about the potential downstream impacts on workforces, leaders are far more likely to believe that AI will create new jobs in their organizations than they are to be worried about AI causing layoffs (57% vs 15% strongly agree/agree).

AI Agents and Education: Simulated Practice at Scale - Ethan R. Mollick, et al; SSRN

This paper explores the potential of generative AI in creating adaptive educational simulations. By leveraging a system of multiple AI agents, simulations can provide personalized learning experiences, offering students the opportunity to practice skills in scenarios with AI-generated mentors, role-players, and instructor-facing evaluators. We describe a prototype, PitchQuest, a venture capital pitching simulator that showcases the capabilities of AI in delivering instruction, facilitating practice, and providing tailored feedback. The paper discusses the pedagogy behind the simulation, the technology powering it, and the ethical considerations in using AI for education. While acknowledging the limitations and need for rigorous testing, we propose that generative AI can significantly lower the barriers to creating effective, engaging simulations, opening up new possibilities for experiential learning at scale.

Monday, July 01, 2024

Ahead of GPT-5 launch, another test shows that people cannot distinguish ChatGPT from a human in a conversation test - Wayne Williams, Tech Radar

In the study, 500 participants were assigned to one of five groups. They engaged in a conversation with either a human or one of the three AI systems. The game interface resembled a typical messaging app. After five minutes, participants judged whether they believed their conversation partner was human or AI and provided reasons for their decisions. The results were interesting. GPT-4 was identified as human 54% of the time, ahead of GPT-3.5 (50%), with both significantly outperforming ELIZA (22%) but lagging behind actual humans (67%). Participants were no better than chance at identifying GPT-4 as AI, indicating that current AI systems can deceive people into believing they are human.

How to use ChatGPT to digitize your handwritten notes for free - Sabrina Ortiz, ZDnet

When OpenAI supercharged the free version of ChatGPT with GPT-4o in May, users gained the ability to upload files, including images and documents, and to interact with images in multiple ways, such as extracting text. Also: How to use ChatGPT to analyze PDFs for free. This means you can upload handwritten documents, from sticky notes to meeting and class notes to packing lists, and convert them into text. Then, you can use that text to create new content by copying and pasting it into presentations, emails, outlines, essays, Quizlets, and more. Sounds too good to be true? I thought the same, but after testing the tool, I can assure you that it works efficiently and quickly. Getting started is simple, and you will not want to stop once you start.