Frost on a velux shaped as fractals

Learning By Writing despite GPT

Reading Time: 3 minutes

I am old enough to remember a teacher writing on a board or piece of plastic for an overhead projector. “Why don’t you just give us photocopies of what you’re writing instead of asking us to copy down what you’re writing. “Because you will remember it better if you write it down.”

At the time this seemed stupid and a waste of time. Years later I think that we could have been taught to take summarised notes rather than literal notes but that isn’t the point. The point is that learning is as much about writing as it is about understanding the material Every day for weeks in a row I have taken the time to write a 300 word post and it’s difficult. Not only do you need to come up with an idea but you need to develop it into something that is at least three hundred words long.

In my opinion chatGPT is going to lower the quality of people’s ability to write, by doing the writing for them. The process in and of itself is the learning experience. You don’t learn by typing a term in a search engine and reading. You learn by thinking of something, and then putting it into words. You learn by trying to write, finding that you have knowledge gaps, and then reading more, before returning to the document you are working on.

The notion that you can get AI to write essays. academic papers, articles and more, is destructive.It is destructive because writing is a skill that is learned through practice. Writing requires us to learn how to think, elaborate, and then make clear. Writing is about elaborating ideas, and rewriting, to make those ideas clear to understand.

Writing is a conversation that you can have with yourself. There is a lot to be gained by writing, rather than getting AI to write.

I love technology, and I love when it can replace boring repetitive tasks, such as entering data into a database and more. I like when it takes data from a form, and places it into a database.

What I hate about tech like chatGPT is that it is designed to replace human beings with artificial intellgence. It is about generating revenue for shareholders, without thinking of the humanity that is lost by doing away with human writers.

One of the reasons I don’t like YouTube, blog farms, Buzzfeed and other sources of “news” is that they have clickbait headlines and rubbish content. We need humans to write content that we read because human written articles are personal. AI is cold.

Recently tech giants, that doubled their profits from one year to the next, with billions of dollars in cash, or at least savings, fired thousands of people, not because they were running out of cash, or struggling to survive, but because they had to maximise profit, not for the human staff, but for the shareholders.
It didn’t end there. Even the execs are taking pay cuts. We live in an age where companies are making billions, or even trillions in profit, and yet the money only flows one way. If a company is profitable it should be investing in staff, giving them better conditions and making sure they stay.

Instead companies are making record profits, to pay dividends, rather than staff.

We are living in affluent times, but the wealthy benefit whilst the rest of society lives in insecurity. That’s why technology like chatGPT worries me. We live in an age of enormous wealth, but it is being funnelled out of society, into offshore accounts, never to be seen again.

And Finally

Remember “The medium is the message” and “The manufacturing of consent”. If AI, rather than individuals write what we read, then those who control the technology control how we think. Read Mindf*ck and look at how FaceBook played with our emotions. Look at who has bought into chatGPT and you will see why I do not like or trust this technology.

I love tech, when it is developed and controlled by moral, rather than corrupt people.