This may sound surprising (although it shouldn’t). General media promotes a lot of hype and dire warnings and smoke-and-mirrors about large language models (LLM)—the latest type of augmented (artificial) intelligence. Do you think that if you could even get a peek into the math and technology that you could at least have a better grip on risk and reward?

I have just the book for you. The publicists sent a review copy. I was fascinated.

More than a Chatbot by Mascha Kurpicz-Briki, a professor for data engineering, enables readers to understand and be part of the exciting new development of powerful text processing and generation tools. After reading this book, the reader will be confident enough to participate in public discussions about how new generations of language models will impact society and be aware of the risks and pitfalls of such technologies.

Mascha Kurpicz-Briki is professor for data engineering at the Bern University of Applied Sciences in Biel, Switzerland, and co-leader of the research group Applied Machine Intelligence.

In particular, the book discusses the following questions: How did the field of automated text processing and generation evolve over the last years, and what happened to allow the incredible recent advances? Are chatbots such as ChatGPT or Bard truly understanding humans? What pitfalls exist and how are stereotypes of the society reflected in such models? What is the potential of such technology, and how will the digital society of the future look like in terms of human-chatbot-collaboration?

The book is aimed for a general audience, briefly explaining mathematical or technical background when necessary. After having read this book, you will be confident to participate in public discussions about how this new generation of language models will impact society. You will be aware of the risks and pitfalls these technologies can bring along, and how to deal responsibly when making use of tools built from AI technology in general.

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