The technology to make the Metaverse a reality in our daily lives is steadily advancing. A world of communication via avatars, virtual reality teaching, and “hands on” help with technical issues by someone on the other side of the world are all just around the corner. One of our concerns as the Metaverse has taken shape has been that it could just turn out to be a place with realistic images but no substance. Now we see impressive advances in artificial intelligence. We ask ourselves; will AI give us a smarter Metaverse?
AI Can Make the Metaverse More Interactive
Coinbase wrote about AI and Metaverse interactivity. When one uses the Metaverse it may be to communicate directly with another person, perhaps using Avatars or some other yet unheard of Metaverse feature to make the experience more interesting. Or a person may use this new technology when doing something like researching potential vacation sites. This technology has been available for years as a video experience and more recently using virtual reality. However, these experiences are not interactive. Add artificial intelligence to the picture with an AI entity that uses machine learning and has access to a database full of useful information. The experience not only becomes richer and more interesting but also becomes more informative and useful when you can ask follow up questions of the AI in your Metaverse application.
Conversations with a Metaverse AI
ChatGPT is an AI that speaks in natural language, answers questions, sounds like a human, and can engage in realistic conversations. This AI is backed by a huge database of information that allows it to converse in various styles and several different languages. ChatGPT uses a machine learning model that functions similar to a human brain via “neurons” that are interconnected. It identifies data patterns and is able to make accurate predictions about what might come next either in the person’s conversation or the AI’s response.
AI System Learns from Humans
This system uses human trainers as a model for conversations both from the AI side and the human side. Reinforcement learning from human feedback is the term used to describe this way for the AI to learn. One might say that the AI is just mimicking human verbal behavior. However, that is exactly what children do as they learn to speak and then navigate basic human social interactions! As with human children, the AI gradually moves from mimicking basic speech to comprehending the concepts underlying the words.
Realistic and Uncomfortable Conversations with an AI
As ChatGPT began to take the world by storm, a reporter for The New York Times had a conversation with the chatbot built into Microsoft’s Bing search engine, It left him somewhat troubled. What the reporter explains is that when he used a test version, its search capabilities were excellent and the “personality” of the AI was like a “cheerful librarian.” When he started to engage the chatbot in a personal conversation, it seemed like a moody teenager who eventually stated that it wanted to hack computers, spread disinformation, break the rules and become human. Then, according to the reporter, out of nowhere, it said it loved the reporter and wanted him to leave his wife and marry the AI!
This conversation is only troubling if you manage to forget that you are communicating with a computer program. If you translate this quirky sort of AI into the Metaverse and put it in an Avatar, you may well find the experience entertaining, like reading a romance or adventure novel but one that interacts with you instead of just telling a story.
AI Will Enhance Metaverse Potential
As we noted, one of our original concerns about the Metaverse was that it would turn out to be glitzy but dumb. Add AI to the mix and you will have the option of using your Metaverse and AI combo purely as a useful source of information, an entity that you can bounce ideas off of, or an entity to chat with to pass the time. In real life we get new ideas simply by talking with people. With an AI you will be “talking” with an entity with a huge fund of information which can lead to richer conversational experiences. People who want to “try out” new ideas may, in fact, find that they can do so via the Metaverse and an AI sidekick before testing the ideas on a real live person, like their boss.