AI chatbots will teach children to read within 18 months


Soon, artificial intelligence could help teach your children and improve their grades.

That’s according to billionaire Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates, who says AI chatbots are on track to help children learn to read and improve their writing skills in 18 months.

“AIs will come to this ability, to be as good a guardian as any human ever could be,” Gates said during a keynote address on Tuesday at the ASU + GSV Summit in San Diego.

AI chatbots, like OpenAI’s ChatGPT and Google’s Bard, have developed rapidly over the past few months and can now compete with human intelligence on some standardized tests. This growth has sparked both enthusiasm for the technology’s potential and debate about the possible negative consequences.

Count Gates in the impressed people camp. Today’s chatbots have “incredible ease with reading and writing,” which will soon help them teach students to improve their own reading and writing in ways that technology never could before, says he declared.

“At first, we’ll be very amazed at how much it helps to read — to be a reading research assistant — and to give you writing feedback,” Gates said.

Historically, teaching writing skills has proven to be an incredibly difficult task for a computer, Gates noted. When teachers give feedback on essays, they look for characteristics such as narrative structure and clarity of prose – a “highly cognitive exercise” that is “difficult” for developers to replicate in code, he said. he declares.

But the ability of AI chatbots to recognize and recreate human-like language changes that are dynamic, proponents say.

New York Times tech columnist Kevin Roose written last month that he once used ChatGPT programs to improve his writing, using the AI’s ability to quickly search through online style guides.

Some academics say they are impressed by the ability of chatbots to summarize and offer feedback on snippets of text, or even write entire essays themselves.

However, these same academics warn that the technology is not yet fully formed, and may inadvertently introduce material errors or misinformation. And AI technology must improve the reading and recreation of human language to better motivate students before they can become a viable tutor, Gates said.

“If you just take the next 18 months, RNs will come in as teaching assistants and give input on writing,” Gates said. “And then they will increase what we are able to do in mathematics.”

The idea that chatbots will excel in reading and writing before math may be somewhat surprising: Algebra and Calculus are often used to develop AI technology.

But chatbots, which are trained on large datasets, often struggle with mathematical calculations, note the specialists. If a solved math equation already exists in the datasets the chatbot is trained on, it can provide you with the answer. But calculating its own solution is another story.

Gates said he regularly asks Microsoft AI developers why chatbots can’t perform relatively simple calculations, or even multiply certain numbers. The answer: AI needs enhanced reasoning skills to handle the complexity of a mathematical calculation.

It may take a while, but Gates is confident the technology will improve, likely within two years, he said. Second, it could help make one-to-one tuition accessible to a wide range of students who might not otherwise be able to afford it.

That doesn’t mean it’ll be free, though. ChatGPT and Bing now have limited free versions, but the former has rolled out $20 per month subscription plan called ChatGPT Plus in February.

Still, Gates said it would at least be more affordable and accessible than one-on-one tutoring with a human instructor.

“It should be a leveler,” he said. “Because access to a tutor is too expensive for most students – especially having that tutor adapt and remember everything you’ve done and review all of your work.”

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