Nothing exciting to say this morning but it's a pleasure to see you (or it would be if I could see you).
Item 1: a link
Okay, what is the deal with all these new AI chatbots and are they any good? I think this piece by Ted Chiang (a gifted sci-fi writer whose work I recommend) may undersell their usefulness for (and potential for screwing up) more quotidian writing exercises, but it’s a helpful not-too-technical look at what ChatGPT and its cousins are doing and whether we should start worrying about whether it's time to grant them citizenship.
My personal view is that these things are mostly just sophisticated pattern-matching black boxes parroting humanity's own words back at us, and do not have what we would consider "consciousness". But it's fair to say that an objective assessment of human beings might reach the same conclusion.
Item 2: a list
2023 Best Picture nominees, ranked
- Everything Everywhere All At Once
- Top Gun: Maverick
- Avatar: The Way of Water
- The Fabelmans
- The Banshees of Inisherin
- Women Talking
- Triangle of Sadness
- All Quiet on the Western Front
Item 3: a media recommendation
I can't embed it here, unfortunately, but the recommendation is "Around the World / Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger" from Daft Punk's Live 2007. Click here for the whole album (or find it on your streaming service of choice).
Item 4: word of the week
Item 5: a photograph
Thanks for reading - have a splendid weekend and let's reconvene next Friday.