Hard to understand, harder to know what it will mean!
CEO Commentary by Mike McMorris
If you read any news, you will be hearing a lot about artificial intelligence (AI). My own interest in, and reading about, the topic has given me more questions than answers.
Probably the best known publicly used AI is ChatGPT. Released November 30, 2022, it quickly became the fastest growing consumer application in history. By January 2023, that’s two months, it gained 100 million users! This helped to push the valuation of parent company OpenAI to $29 billion USD. Today, a mere nine months later, that valuation sits between $80 and $90 billion USD.
I have not used ChatGPT, but its power became real for me when a colleague told me of his first experience. Following an important meeting, during which many pages of notes were captured, he committed to writing a report. Quickly forgotten, this commitment came back to him as he started a two-week vacation. Wondering if AI might be helpful, he asked it to create a report and one and a half seconds later, he had it. As he said, “The report wasn’t good... it was very good.”
I recently joined a session called “Food's AI Opportunity”. Most presentations dealt with technology and its use in the crops sector, but one speaker highlighted work supported by Canada’s poultry sector. Antimicrobial resistance is an issue to all humanity and affects the entire livestock sector. This project is using AI to discover and refine antimicrobial peptide (AMP) formulations as an alternative to antimicrobials to help fight bacteria and viruses.
The Atlantic (July 2023) had a fascinating article based on an interview with Sam Altman, CEO of Open AI. It is very eye-opening and left me with one conclusion: AI is coming at us faster than we can imagine. Regarding the future of AI, I recommend a book called “Novacene” which looks at how humans and AI may coexist.
One exciting prospect is the application of AI in livestock research. Researchers will be able to answer questions and develop products much faster. Industry will need to be clear on what current challenges and opportunities they want this faster research to address.