According to Kevin Kelly, a futurist, author, and the founding executive editor of Wired magazine, this is a good time to enter the field of artificial intelligence (AI). He thinks that in the future, there will be no AI experts, which means anyone entering the field now or in the near future can make their mark. Kelly believes that there are no real AI agents yet, and today’s generative AI tools, including the AI chatbot ChatGPT, are best thought of as universal interns. Getting high-quality results from them takes an extremely close intimacy, and some people have become AI whisperers.
One way to get started in AI is as a prompt engineer. A prompt engineer devises prompts chains to get AI systems to produce a desired result across a variety of purposes and industries. AI is in its infancy, deeply so, according to Kelly. He says that the long-term effects of AI will affect society to a greater degree than electricity and fire, but its full effects will take centuries to play out.
Large language models, on which AI chatbots like ChatGPT are based, are a new type of intelligence, and the art of instructing them in a way that delivers the best results is still in its infancy. The full effects of AI will take centuries to play out, but in the short term, AI may create new jobs such as prompt engineer.
Anthropic, a startup that makes ChatGPT rival Claude, recently asked for a prompt engineer, and the company noted that the field of prompt-engineering is less than 2 years old. The position was hard to hire for, but the salary range was $175,000 to $335,000. The company asked applicants to demonstrate their skills by experimenting with Claude and showing that they had managed to get complex behaviours from well-crafted prompts.
In conclusion, Kelly believes that anyone starting out in AI right now has as much chance as anyone else of making breakthroughs and becoming the reigning experts. While millions of people are using primitive AI agents to write rough drafts, suggest code, summarize research, and brainstorm, getting high-quality results from them takes an AI whisperer. The field of prompt engineering is less than 2 years old, and its full effects are yet to be realized, but in the short term, it may create new job opportunities.