UCU community weighs in on artificial intelligence
Originally posted at: https://www.ugandapartners.org/2023/05/ucu-community-weighs-in-on-artificial-intelligence/
In late 2022, Artificial Intelligence (AI) chatbots took the internet by storm. Then came the ChatGPT, which is the Chat Generative Pre-trained Transformer, a software that a user can ask a question using conversational or natural language. The software then processes the questions before framing the responses. The AI chatbots gather information faster and more precisely than other search engines would do. As a result, it has, of recent, become one of the most used AI software and is popular among university students as some of them now use the technology to do assignments for them. Pauline Luba asked the community of Uganda Christian University (UCU) about their views on ChatGPT.
“I think ChatGPT is a good thing. I have two jobs and I study at the same time. AI has helped me plan my life and reduce my stressful circumstances. It was designed to be an assistant, not a teacher. I relate the current use of AI chatbots to the days when the electronic calculator had just been introduced and people detested its use. Just like the calculator, AI chatbots are something that will help people solve problems faster. It is something that will become the norm for younger generations.”
“ChatGPT is efficient and makes our life easier, but if you look at it from a learner’s point of view, it weakens our thinking capacity. It will make one lazy and make them depend highly on technology to solve even challenges that they would have solved. I have previously used Quill bot, an AI that rephrases one’s statements, and had got fond of it, until I realized how it was slowing down my learning. I faced the same experience with YouTube when learning how to code and I do not wish to be that dependent on the app again. Books are the way to go.”
“I feel like it’s an addiction. Once you start, you can’t stop because it makes life easier. It is teaching people the easier way of doing things. Artificial Intelligence is spoiling the future generations and, therefore, it should only be used in education, but not in the professional field.”
“AI is the best thing that has ever happened to law students. This is because they are constantly required to search for and acquire certain information, a practice which is time-consuming. With AI like Snaps AI, I have been able to easily acquire material that I need, instead of spending time searching through different books.”
“Of course, AI is going to take over many jobs, but the question is, how efficient is it? As a user of ChatGPT and Draw AI, what separates a human brain from AI is how a human thinks. We all don’t think the same way. Whereas the AI may have an advantage in offering a quicker analysis of an issue, the human brain has the advantage of emotions.”
“I have just recently begun to think of AI in terms of employment after news broke of a robot that would have the ability to perform a lawyer’s job, hence flushing out the need for lawyers. Uganda may take long to get affected by such developments because it is still traditional, as far as technology is concerned. Otherwise, I believe that it can still be beneficial to the employment sector.”
“AI has helped me save time when it comes to research work and interests. I have used Bing and AI Monica. I know they can be bad when misused. However, I think it all depends on how they are being used. Some people abuse the innovations, instead of using them to make their lives easier.”
“ChatGPT has saved me time, especially when I am in a fix, trying to search for things. I praise the algorithm of ChatGPT spinout for being able to give me instant information, considerably cutting the time I would spend searching for something. It’s such a powerful AI and you can get a huge amount of data within a short time. Of course, the downside is that it can make one lazy.”
“Artificial Intelligence can simplify voting and influence politics through consultation. But I would not turn to base totally on it to make policies as a leader. As an individual, I prefer to stick to my intuition. I think AI is something that needs to be explored more by both teachers and students.”
“Technology in itself is not an end, but, rather, a means to an end. Chatbots can facilitate research and learning, just as the Google search engine has always done, but there is potential for them to be abused by those who do not appreciate technology nearly as much as the enabler. I have caught students using ChatGPT to do all their essay work and thus decided to dwell more on the student’s comprehension and application of the subject matter, rather than essays which can be generated from the chatbots.”
“I didn’t know about it. But if you are one who resorts to having AI to do all your work, still, during exams, it will be evident and that will not benefit you. Also, life in the real world is real. With time, we could consider policies regarding the use of AIs, but our system, as a university, is able to adapt to whatever comes its way.”
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