AI Fear

May 9, 2024
2 min read

Sitting here after a very busy week juggling the crushing pace required to support my customer while also managing a business and leading our AI team, I reflect on this emotional roller coaster. When I came to appreciate the scope of the impact AI and generative AI will have on humankind and especially on my business, I was simultaneously awestruck and afraid. As my good friend and fellow Phoenician John Comiskey says, it’s as big as the personal computer, the internet, the combustion engine.

The awe part is easy. Everyone is talking about it. It’s quite simple to see for yourself the power of AI, just run the peanut butter and jelly sandwich experiment or have a conversation with ChatGPT. The fear part is hard, and I find that I am on a roller coaster much like the one described by Helen Shaw to Steve Martin in the classic 1989 film Parenthood.

The pace of AI innovation is as crushing as my work schedule, and every single day I am learning something new. First, it was how to log in to ChatGPT, then it was the basics of large language models (LLMs). Next it was on to vector embeddings, which took me back to my days as a math major (who knew linear algebra would actually come in handy one day?). Then onto Pinecone and the vector database. And who could forget about retrieval augmented generation (RAG)! I was on top of the world that day. See Figure 1

Figure 1: AI Emotional Roller Coaster


And then I spent some time with Chad Steelberg. And then I found Eugene Yan's website. Evaluation models? What? All I did was make a ragbot? Thus began my rapid descent to the bottom of the roller coaster where I know next to nothing (see also Figure 1). And that pretty much describes every week on this AI journey. Don’t worry, you are not alone. Be like Grandma from Parenthood. See Figure 2.

Figure 2: Grandma from the 1989 Classic Film Parenthood

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