ChatGPT is based on what is known as Large Language Model (LLM) created by OpenAI. It is part of a class of AI (Artificial Intelligence) tools known as generative AI.
Generative AI is a type of artificial intelligence that’s designed to create or generate new content, rather than simply recognize patterns or classify information. In other words, it’s focused on creating something novel, like a piece of art, music, or even text, rather than just recognizing or manipulating existing data.
Generative AI works by using machine learning algorithms to analyze and learn from existing data and then using that knowledge to create new outputs that resemble the original data. For example, a generative AI model trained on a dataset of images of birds might be able to create new images of birds that look similar to the original ones but aren’t exact copies.
Some common applications of generative AI include creating artwork, generating music, writing stories or articles, and even developing new products or designs. It’s an exciting and rapidly evolving field, with new breakthroughs and innovations emerging all the time.
In simple terms, ChatGPT is a computer program that has been trained on an enormous amount of text data in order to understand and generate human-like language.
ChatGPT is controversial, to say the least. On one side you have folks who fear it might put real humans out of a job, while others think of it as cheating. However, on the other side of the fence, there are those who think it has the potential to be a game-changer across many disciplines and can be used in many positive ways.
(By the way, the above paragraphs were written largely by ChatGPT, with some editing by a real human!)
If you are interested in learning more about ChatGPT and AI in general and their use in higher education, here is a list of resources put together by the Endicott College Center for Teaching and Learning and the Endicott ChatGPT/AI task force.