5 ways OpenAI’s ChatGPT plugins could change the AI game

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Last week felt like a lifetime in AI. Sure, the week before was fast-paced and so was the week before that, but this one — really, a lifetime. And somehow I just couldn’t let it go. While the rest of the world went about its business, I noodled about the implications of OpenAI’s latest ChatGPT chess move.

You’ve likely heard by now that OpenAI unveiled plugins that link its conversational AI ChatGPT to the real world. Developers can connect their apps and data to ChatGPT, letting it summon information (stock ticks, headlines), regurgitate docs, or act on your behalf (book travel, place takeout orders).

The news immediately got Twitter buzzing, with many seeing the initial list of available ChatGPT plugins, including Expedia, Instacart, Zapier and OpenTable, as a signal of OpenAI‘s ambitions to further its dominance by turning ChatGPT into a developer platform. Others marveled at the simple yet powerful fact that the plugins make it possible for ChatGPT to browse the internet for real-time information.

So how was my weekend? Well, I considered some of the other big ways ChatGPT plugins will shift the AI landscape. Here are five possibilities:

According to OpenAI, plugins offer the potential to tackle various challenges associated with large language models, including “hallucinations,” keeping up with recent events, and accessing (with permission) proprietary information. By integrating explicit access to external data — such as up-to-date information online, code-based calculations, or custom plugin-retrieved information — language models can strengthen their responses with evidence-based references.