Larry Odebrecht

Larry Odebrecht
Head of Data & Analytics

Ah, the good old days. I can recall early in my career, being in a room filled with fellow consultants. They were buzzing with excitement as they agreed to do something quite radical over the winter holiday – purchase something online. It may seem trivial now, but at the time there was great fear of entering credit card information online. However the fear was followed by amazement when those same purchases arrived. Little did I know, I was witnessing the beginning of monetization of the information age. Now here we are today, experiencing a similar moment with artificial intelligence (AI).

Intelligence in the Information Age

The definition of intelligence (not artificial intelligence) has undergone a significant transformation over the years.

In the Pre-Information Age, intelligence was mostly about memorizing and recalling information. Students were evaluated on their ability to remember dates, facts, and formulas. Additionally, exams were usually multiple-choice or standardized tests that focused on recall. This type of intelligence was often measured by one’s ability to recite information rather than their ability to apply it. My mother and grandmother, who were both English teachers, often lamented the fact that I was not made to memorize. To this day I cannot remember simple poems that were popular in our household; my favorite, ‘who gives of himself of his alms feeds three: himself, his hungry neighbor, and me‘.

With the advent of the Information Age, the definition of intelligence shifted dramatically. Since the explosion of information and technology, intelligence was defined by one’s ability to find, analyze, and synthesize information from a variety of sources. It required critical thinking skills, and the ability to make connections between seemingly disparate pieces of information.

Shifting to the Artificial Intelligence Age

We’ve recently reached a dramatic shift. The Information Age is coming to a close and we are starting to enter the AI age. For those with creative abilities, this is a shift worth celebrating.

There is no doubt language models are beginning the next technology race. We’re discovering these tools are incredibly valuable for synthesizing information from a variety of sources and generating new insights. AI tools drive higher value on creativity and synthesis. Unlike traditional AI systems that rely on pre-programmed rules and algorithms, Chat GPT can analyze and connect different pieces of information in new and innovative ways. This leads to fresh solutions that would not have been possible before. By empowering users to connect the information in new ways, these tools will revolutionize the way we approach problem-solving.

In the AI Age, the friction between pen and thought is removed. Quality writing is easy. Interesting writing will be much more valued. Those who can take those new insights and drive them in valuable ways are the new premium. With that, a special bonus is given to those who take their thoughts and put them into action.

The new wave of AI-enabled tools represents a new frontier in the evolution of intelligence. This wave will add value to creativity and those who can affect change. By enabling us to connect different pieces of information in new and innovative ways, these tools will change the way we think and solve problems.

Larry Odebrecht published this article regarding Artificial Intelligence first on LinkedIn here.

More Larry Odebrecht Blogs