Commercial Integrator August 2023 - 40

TREND Considering ChatGPT
S
GENERATIVE AI:
THE MODERN-DAY GOLD RUSH
CI asks industry thought leaders their thoughts on generative AI, its advantages and challenges,
how it will impact the integration industry and how to implement it effectively. By Alyssa Borelli
What exactly is " AI " ? Artificial
intelligence (AI) is a term that was
originally defined as " the science
and engineering of making intelligent
machines " by emeritus Stanford
professor John McCarthy in 1955.
As language and technology have
shifted, though, the term has come
to refer to machines and systems that
can demonstrate certain traits of human
intelligence, including learning,
problem-solving and perception.
The current conversation is focused
primarily on generative AI, which is
a technology that produces content
that is informed by its access to existing
banks of digitized knowledge.
GENERATIVE AI TOOLS have been one
of the hottest topics in the business world
since OpenAI launched ChatGPT at the
end of November 2022. Integration
firms, enterprises and end users are now
excitedly researching how they can use
this powerful AI chatbot to automate daily
tasks, streamline operations and amplify
work output.
Many of our foremost thought leaders
perceive generative AI as one of the
most disruptive technological paradigms
shifts of our time. Bill Fons, president of
Wixom, Mich.-headquartered integration
firm Promotion Technology Group (PTG),
compares it to the birth of the internet.
He notes the immense benefits that generative
AI has to offer across industries
and, in particular, in commercial AV.
To put things in perspective as regards
just how quickly this technology is growing,
ChatGPT hit an estimated 100 million
monthly active users in January 2023,
making it the fastest-growing application
40
in history. TikTok took nine months to
reach 100 million users, whereas Instagram
took two-and-a-half years.
Commercial Integrator consulted with
three industry thought leaders to get their
insights on generative AI and how it will
impact the AV integration industry. This
article weaves together their insights,
analysis and perspective.
Examining the Differences
Between AI and Generative AI
Let's take a step back and look at the differences
between artificial intelligence (AI)
generally and generative AI specifically.
" AI " is a term that's familiar to AV
professionals. Think of Poly's AI-powered
cameras or Bose's noise-canceling headphones.
Generative AI is much different.
According to West McDonald, chief noise
maker, Tigerpaw Software, who is also
founder of West McDonald Co., what AI
doesn't do is have a human touch. " In
other words, you can't ask a Bose speaker
Commercial Integrator AUGUST 2023
a question or get it to reset its parameters
by talking to it, " he explains. " That's
one of the things that's going to change.
You'll be able to have a conversation with
whatever the system is, and that could be
five or six components of things. "
McDonald continues the thought, saying,
" I think the idea of artificial intelligence
is the wrong way to look at [generative AI].
Unfortunately, the name has already been
established - [but] it's more like augmented
intelligence. What generative AI does...
it doesn't replace anybody - it gives the
person with that knowledge 10 times more
potential to do more things better. " He
adds, " Most people don't understand that
there's probably five or six different flavors
of AI. If you look at IBM Watson, that's been
around for a long time, but that's not a
natural language processing engine. This is
entirely unique to the world. "
Blaine Brown, principal consultant at global
integration firm Diversified, agrees with
the distinctions being made. " AI-powered
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Commercial Integrator August 2023

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Commercial Integrator August 2023

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Commercial Integrator August 2023 - 1
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