Putting Generative Artificial Intelligence to Work
The attention that ChatGPT and DALL E have received in the media over the past year has been massive. And to some extent, this hype has overshadowed the real-life uses and capabilities of generative artificial intelligence (AI) technology. This article will describe some of the ways generative AI can help organisations day-to-day.
What is Generative AI?
Generative AI describes technologies that can create content including audio, programming code, images, text, and videos based on the analysis of vast quantities of unstructured, unlabelled data. This data can include the contents of the public internet and organisations' content stores and databases.
Recent breakthroughs in the field have the potential to drastically change the way we approach content creation. Allowing knowledge workers to offload tasks to software tools and freeing them up for more creative and satisfying aspects of work. New tools are released, and existing tools are improved every day, allowing business users to tap into this automation powerhouse for their daily tasks. Key use cases include:
Generative AI can help knowledge workers write faster and better by generating text from a prompt or keywords. For example, ChatGPT from OpenAI can assist with the creation of initial drafts for emails, reports, memos, and other documents. Users can simply input a brief statement or key talking points with ChatGPT expanding on these points to produce a coherent outline, saving time, and reducing writer's block.
Microsoft 365 Copilot uses similar large language models to automate tasks within its portfolio of work apps, such as drafting text in Word, creating slideshows in PowerPoint, and composing emails in Outlook based on an outline or keywords. Currently available via an invitation-only paid preview program, general Copilot 365 access will be available from 1st November 2023.
Generative AI can help workers design more creatively and efficiently by generating images from the current context. For example, Microsoft Designer, which is in preview and free to use, is a generative AI tool that can create images for different purposes, such as logos, icons, illustrations, and infographics.
MS PowerPoint Designer (formerly "Design Ideas") suggests alternative imagery, colour schemes and layouts for presentation slides, freeing you up to concentrate on the message rather than how the slides look. Open AI tool DALL-E can generate images from text prompts in multiple styles, including photorealistic imagery, painting, or cartoons. Users can further refine the images generated by adding more detail to their initial prompt and re-generating for example “...black and white photograph...".
Microsoft Teams includes several generative AI-powered features, such as transcription, translation, and summarization. Teams can automatically transcribe audio or video recordings of meetings, calls, and chats, a helpful feature for those who are hard of hearing or those looking to review the discussion points post-meeting. In addition to translating text and speech into over 100 languages, Microsoft Teams can also summarise the key points of a meeting or discussion, helping team members who join late to quickly get up to speed.
Analysing data and providing insights
Microsoft Power BI uses generative AI to provide features like Quick Insights, which uses various algorithms to search for trends in your dataset and generates charts and graphs accordingly. The Q&A feature allows users to ask natural language questions about their datasets and get answers in the form of visuals, while the Smart Narratives feature creates plain text summaries and explanations of the data.
For Excel users the Excel LABS.GENERATIVEAI function available free from the MS app store, is a custom function that allows you to send prompts from the Excel grid to a generative AI model and then return the results from the model directly into your worksheet.
These are just some of the powerful real-world applications of generative AI, with new tools and features coming online daily, both on a free and paid license basis. At Storm Technology we help organisations like yours take full advantage of the capabilities that AI technology can offer, both now and into the future. To understand how best to employ these tools within your organisation, get in touch with a member of our team today.