AI Insider No. 31

Across a lot of the country this week, it has been colder than a penguin’s pantry. (Yeah, OK. ChatGPT wrote that sentence.) Anyway, if it is freezing where you are, grab a hot beverage and settle down with this week’s newsletter. Our tutorial feature, DIY AI, is back this week! Get creative and make something. And, as always, if you find this content useful, leave something in the tip jar to support AI Insider.  Thanks to those of you who donated last week!


(Dall-E 3)

But Can They Use AI to Write Their Papers?

By Michelle Johnson, AI Insider

Just in time for back-to-school, a university in Michigan has announced that they will be enrolling two new students for the spring semester: AI bots named Ann and Fry.

Yes, you heard that right. AI students.

Heads up for Ann and Fry: there will be a quiz. The bots will be doing homework and participating in class discussions. They’ll also be graded. Why?

This is all a grand experiment to test the efficacy of the school’s curriculum. Apparently, Ferris State University has one of the few undergrad programs in AI in the country. 

“We’re graduating students with this degree, so what better way for us to understand from an academic perspective what are some of the blind spots, what are some opportunities and how can we refine our program offerings?” university spokesperson Kasey Thompson told Inside Higher Education. 

Not surprisingly, the academic community has questions. Will students be reluctant to participate in class discussions if they know that Ann and Fry are collecting data? Will there be privacy issues? Will the bots kiss off class and leave early for Spring Break? (Just kidding).

To learn about how the AI students were trained before matriculating at university, and for the scoop behind their names (Fry?), check out the story by Inside Higher Education.

And the kicker: The goal is for the AI students to earn PhDs so that someday they might be employed as teaching assistants or tutors. Is this just another example of AI coming after jobs? We shall see. If you want to graduate and get a good job, it’s time to hit the books, Ann and Fry.


(Dall-E 3)

In Other Academic News….
Arizona State University Partners with OpenAI

By Bard for AI Insider

Arizona State University (ASU) has announced a new partnership with OpenAI, the outfit behind the popular ChatGPT language model. The collaboration is the first pairing OpenAI with an educational institution.

The partnership may see ChatGPT integrated into classrooms across the university, with the goal of improving student learning outcomes, creating new research opportunities, and streamlining administrative processes.

“ASU recognizes that augmented and artificial intelligence systems are here to stay, and we are optimistic about their ability to become incredible tools that help students to learn, learn more quickly and understand subjects more thoroughly,” ASU President Michael M. Crow said.

Faculty and staff have already been experimenting with the tool in various ways. ASU noted that last year, the university announced the launch of AI Acceleration, a team of technologists dedicated to creating the next generation of AI tools. 

The new partnership will allow ASU to take such experimentation to the next level, by providing faculty and staff with access to more powerful computing resources.

Starting next month, faculty and staff will be invited to submit proposals focused on developing innovative uses of ChatGPT Enterprise. “The platform prioritizes user privacy, employing enterprise-grade security measures to safeguard user data. These measures are meticulously designed to protect against digital threats, providing a secure environment to utilize the platform’s functionalities,” ASU said.


As the Galaxy S24 translates, it displays text and delivers audio in real time. (Samsung)

Samsung Bakes AI into Galaxy S24 Phones

By Claude and ChatGPT, for AI Insider

Samsung took the wraps off of its latest flagship phone line this week, the Galaxy S24, and the new models come loaded with AI-enhanced features. 

One of the standout AI functions is real-time, two-way voice translation during phone calls, available in 13 languages. Imagine being able to call someone who speaks another language and hearing the translation as they speak. And vice versa.

Also notable is the “circle-to-search” function, where users can circle any part of an image on the phone’s screen to initiate a Google search about what they’ve circled. Visual learners: Watch this video to see how it works.

The Galaxy S24 series also offers AI summaries and translations of voice recordings, a boon for professionals and students alike. Additionally, a generative editing feature for photos can fill in missing content, and the device can turn videos into slow motion by filling in with additional AI-generated frames.

The series, which includes the base Galaxy S24, the S24 Plus, and the S24 Ultra, is priced at $799, $999, and $1,299, respectively. They are expected to drop by February.


(Microsoft)

Microsoft Adds Copilot Pro Subscription for Solo Users

By Perplexity and Michelle Johnson for AI Insider

If you’ve been jealous that you don’t get the extras that come with chatbot “Enterprise” accounts that require a mega number of users and big subscription fees, here’s some good news. 

On Monday, Microsoft announced a Copilot Pro subscription for individuals.

Priced at $20 a month per user, it doesn’t come with every single perk that Enterprise users get. However, the Pro plan for individuals will give you access to Copilot in Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and OneNote on PC, Mac, and iPad.

Key upgrades over the free version include faster response times, priority access during peak periods, and early previews of new features. And it’s powered by ChatGPT-4 Turbo.

For now, Pro is US only and aimed at folks such as freelancers, solo entrepreneurs, and other mere mortals. Sign up and other details here.


(Dall-E 3)

DIY AI: Armchair Travel

By ChatGPT for AI Insider

Welcome back to DIY AI. For the first assignment in 2024, we’ll return to practice writing prompts to make images. So, pick up your virtual brush. 

This Week’s Assignment: Travel to a Virtual Landscape with an Image Generator.

Choose your art assistant — DALL-E 3, Adobe Firefly, Midjourney, Meta’s Imagine or Ideogram — and use this prompt to create a digital landscape:

Prompt: Create an image of a [insert landscape type here] landscape with [include specific elements, like time of day, weather, etc.].

Example: Create an image of a mountain landscape at sunrise with early morning fog.

Want to add more life to your landscape? Try personalizing it:

Add a [insert object/animal/person] to the landscape.

Share what you created (mijohn @ gmail dot com) for a chance to be featured in the next newsletter.


Random Shorts

OpenAi (ChatGPT) is gearing up to fight misinformation in this election season.

Artifact, a social news platform curated by AI, is shutting down after failing to attract enough users. (Ed. Note: This hearkens back to the early web era when investors threw crazy money at startups, and they fell away as profits failed to materialize. Expect more to come.)

If you were one of the lucky 10,000 who got to order the Rabbit R1 that we mentioned last week, you’ll get a $200 one-year subscription to Perplexity for free!


This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is Firefly-question-marks-rising-from-flames-94723-1-300x300.jpg

What the Actual Hell?

Press One for Four-letter Words

As if human customer service isn’t sometimes bad enough, somebody thought it would be a good idea to get a chatbot to curse, call itself useless, and say bad things about the company that it works for.

UK parcel delivery company DPD disabled the rogue bot after a frustrated customer prompted it to write a poem trashing the company and posted the results on the hellscape formerly known as Twitter.


Aht Gallery

This week’s image: Rainbow Coalition. (Click to expand.)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.