• News
  • Columns
  • Interviews
  • BW Communities
  • Events
  • BW TV
  • Subscribe to Print
BW Businessworld

What Is ChatGPT?

Given the issues that still plague ChatGPT, there is still a long road ahead before it can replace conventional search engines

Photo Credit :


Most of us are familiar with the concept of 'chatbot', which we have come across while using some of our favorite apps, especially e-commerce platforms when we have a query regarding our orders. This technology is not new, but developments in this field never cease to happen. Most recent of which has been ChatGPT. 

What is ChatGPT?

It is a project by OpenAI, which is a not-for-profit, artifical intelligence (AI) research laboratory. It is a daughter company of OpenAI LP, which is a for-profit organization. It was founded by Elon Musk, Sam Altman, among others in 2015.  'ChatGPT' is an advanced chatbot, which can have regular conversations with us. GPT stands for Generative Pre Trained Transformation, which is a language model that focuses on deep learning. This implies maximum input of language is provided so that it can pre-train itself with the language before delivering output. ChatGPT is powered by GPT3, a large language model trained on an enormous amount of text data-about 500 Bn words to be specific, across languages.  Given its capacity, one can converse with the AI,  it can give an answer or ask a counted question, or direct you elsewhere as per need. The software now is open for free trial on The company is also working on a GPT 4 model, which will have a capacity of 500 times the existing GPT.

Will it make Google search obsolete?

The short answer is not yet. The advantage of Chatbots is their ability to provide personalised and more precise solutions. It can  Google out the best solution for an individual, instead of the person figuring it out from the search engine themselves. Given that it is more personalised, we can see Chatbots have a long-term memory, as against a search engine that has short-term memory. Plus, a conversational aspect makes it easier for the user to communicate their need. Once you return to the Chatbot, you can resume the conversation from where you left it off. Lastly, there is a safety clause with Chatbots, that is, it declines inappropriate questions when asked. At the same time, there is a chance of human bias creeping in given that it is untimely run by a team of technical experts. Some believe it will challenge human creativity and make it redundant. Others say it will not be able to distinguish between real and fake news, while some say it will serve as a challenge to the education system. There is an additional concern about the cost to run these bots, especially with respect to the environmental cost. Lastly, unless the information is updated in newer versions, the data it provides can be redundant. Given the issues that still plague ChatGPT, there is still a long road ahead before it can replace conventional search engines.