The End of Programming

I was going to brush up on my COBOL, but maybe not:

In this new computer science—if we even call it computer science at all—the machines will be so powerful and already know how to do so many things that the field will look like less of an engineering endeavor and more of an an educational one; that is, how to best educate the machine

Matt Welsh, “The End of Programming

On the other hand, isn’t “educating the machine” what we’ve been doing all along?

Mere humans

AI continues to enthrall everyone. Here’s DHH on AI creativity vs humans:

Why shouldn’t the same be true of AI generated novels, plays, or movies? What realm of creative production does not benefit from the out-of-the-norm inferences that computers have already proven they can make within the bounds of chess and go to great effect? Is what we call human creativity all that different from a large language model anyway? A distillation of observations, inputs, mimetic tendencies, and a wetware random generator? 

DHH, More creative than mere humans

Fair questions. I just wish he wouldn’t keep calling us “mere humans”.

OpenAI Logo

I was playing with the amazing ChatGPT and it felt like something new. Using it felt like the first time I dragged to resize a filled shape in MacPaint on my Macintosh Plus.

I imagine that before too long, just like filled shapes in a drawing program, AI will become just another boring, everyday tool. But not today. Today, to this mere human, it’s magic.

My first real AI moment

I’m a latecomer to AI, but I just had my first real AI revelation moment while using OpenAI’s ChatGPT. I asked it an honest question that I had and got a complete, sensible, and correct answer. It’s like if Google had a brain, or if I asked an assistant to look something up for me and report back. Here’s part of the thread:

Me, chatting with a computer about Emacs

Can you imagine where this leads? I didn’t really get it, until having the above conversation. I’d love being in high school right now. It’s like being in that brief period where calculators were still rare, so having one was like cheating. AI feels like cheating, in a good way.

This feels like the first time I dragged and resized a filled shape in MacPaint on my Macintosh Plus. Or the first time I pinched-to-zoom on the original iPhone.