AI Wave & Custom Software Development
In the ever-shifting ocean of artificial intelligence, a mere ripple has metamorphosed into a tempestuous surge, engulfing diverse sectors in its wake. November 2022 unfurled the curtain on GPT-3’s public beta, accessible through the ChatGPT interface. Even the most ardent AI aficionados, who had their eyes peeled for incremental advancements from platforms like Jarvis, found themselves blindsided by this seismic shift. A veritable tidal wave in the AI landscape, if you will. But what does this mean for us, for society, for the future? You have been working with your trusted technology partner to develop custom software that is as unique as your organization and now this! You are now worried about how all this impacts you, do you have to spend more on adopting AI in your day-to-day operations? Do you have to spend more in training your teams? What about your competitor who is already showcasing how they are using AI to benefit their clients? You haven’t yet completed business analysis and determined business needs and how it will impact system integration. And all the off-the-shelf software you reviewed doesn’t even support your team’s needs perfectly!
Hold that thought; let’s first delve into the cyclical nature of technological evolution, which often mimics the ebb and flow of oceanic tides. Gartner puts it best with their Hype Curve, and it’s extremely relevant and important to understand as we consider the future of AI. Diagram 1 provides the key elements of the Hype Curve.
In the realm of innovation, waves of varying magnitudes are ceaselessly born. Some are mere ripples, others formidable swells, and then there are those rare tsunamis that reshape the coastline of human understanding. The amplitude of each wave often correlates with the level of expectation it generates. So, let’s dissect the dimensions and rhythmic oscillations of this AI-generated hype wave, shall we?
The Wave is REAL
In a whirlwind of technological advancements, GPT-3, GPT-4, Google Sparrow, and other cutting-edge AI models are making their debuts in rapid succession. The wave is not just palpable; it’s a veritable force of nature that’s bound to leave an indelible mark before eventually ebbing. Yet, there’s a dissonance between the public hype and the actual discourse within the industry. What started as a subdued introduction of ChatGPT has now exploded into a recurring headline across mainstream media and tech blogs—many of which, ironically, are penned by AI bots.
Here at Luminous Tec, we’ve been more than just spectators; we’ve been active participants, integrating ChatGPT into our bespoke software solutions for clients. The results? Nothing short of astonishing. Among the myriad applications we’ve implemented within our clients’ enterprise ecosystems are:
- Chatbots that serve as the vanguard of customer service operations
- AI-generated content and articles, tailored in specific voices for internal training modules
- Lightning-fast analysis and interpretation of a plethora of governmental articles, such as those from the IRS, to address research queries
Our team is so deeply ingrained in using this tool that it’s become second nature to us, seamlessly blending into the custom software we craft for our clientele. The thought of a workday without it is now inconceivable.
However, it’s crucial to address the cacophony of misinformation that’s circulating. There are narratives out there that are not just misleading but could potentially be harmful, and that’s a concern we all should share.
Dispelling AI Myths
Do you remember the Blockchain frenzy of 2017—a cautionary tale that still echoes in the corridors of the tech world? Companies leaped onto the Blockchain bandwagon, often without a clear understanding, and many ended up entangled in a web of misconceptions. The risk of history repeating itself with AI is real. To sidestep this pitfall, it’s imperative to debunk some of the prevailing myths about AI that could lead companies astray, preventing them from harnessing its true potential.
MYTH #1: AI IS JUST A TOOL FOR AUTOMATING MANUAL TASKS.
This is a dangerous oversimplification. If you’re looking at AI as a mere replacement for human labor, you’re missing the point—and likely setting yourself up for disappointment. Let’s be clear: AI, in its current state, is akin to an extraordinarily knowledgeable 13-year-old who can spout facts but often lacks the nuanced understanding that comes with human experience. It can execute tasks, for sure, but it can also misinterpret your intentions in ways that can be, well, exasperating.
The real magic happens when human intelligence collaborates with AI. Together, they form a symbiotic relationship that amplifies the capabilities of each. What is even more remarkable is that while you are thinking about having custom software development done, you can add AI to support your team so that their productivity increases. You might think that adding AI to custom software development might cost you an arm and a leg! That is not true – in fact, the time it will save and the increase in productivity due to this will increase the ROI of this small addition of AI to custom software development will pay for itself. Take, for instance, at times our team is asked to create an intricate presentation on a tight deadline to showcase your team’s expertise in custom software development and how it co-relates to the specific case of your client. The AI tool used here has been invaluable and a huge time saver. AI scours dozens of websites and gathers information on the proposed client, to which our team adds their own expertise and market domain-specific insights. Gone are the days when our teams had to spend a gazillion hours doing the research the hard way! After a few iterations, what emerges is a tailored presentation replete with in-depth explanations, relevant industry statistics, solid citations, and a unified narrative. It allows our team to showcase our custom software development chops. The clients are amazed by our in-depth expertise not only in custom software development but also how much effort we took to know about them and the industry in general.
So, the synergy between human intellect and artificial intelligence is far more potent than either element in isolation.
MYTH #2: BEING FIRST TO MARKET WITH AI TOOLS IS A WINNING STRATEGY.
Tread carefully here. You might have heard that if you are not the first one, you lose the beginner’s advantage; it’s already too late. Once again, the Blockchain craze of 2017 offers a cautionary tale: companies with no digital focus were hastily rebranding themselves with “Blockchain” in their names, only to see their valuations soar—and then plummet. This cycle is bound to repeat itself in the AI arena. Amidst the AI buzz, a plethora of tools will emerge, but many will be mere chaff, not worth your investment.
Be skeptical of any technology that trumpets AI as its cornerstone, at least for the time being while AI is going through an explosive spurt of growth. Everyone, new companies are coming up with new use cases to utilize the many offerings of AI. But is that offering really the best? Every time they come up with a new feature, they increase the pricing to capture the cost of research and increase their MRR (Monthly Recurring Revenue). Just because that use case is hype, should you go and adopt it? With all the out-of-the-box apps how will they all fit in your enterprise ecosystem? Does it make sense to discuss your needs and your wants with your Custom Software Development team and ask them to provide you with a solution that integrates AI within the software development process? We’ve counseled numerous clients to be wary of the off-the-shelf solutions that claim to be AI-driven, as the underlying tech often doesn’t live up to the hype. Before making AI a linchpin in your business objective, ensure that the technology’s capabilities enhance your capabilities and are genuinely transformative. How your team will ensure technical support? Don’t just rush into AI-based digital solutions without first developing the strategy and the vision and keep your software development agile and open to change to adjust to the changing times. Standalone Custom Solutions for every need of your organization will stretch your team thin when it comes to technical support. Yes, you can use outsourcing services to support some of these needs but these services don’t come cheap. And remember, the rule that applies to the Custom Software Development also applies to mobile apps as well.
MYTH #3: MY TEAM IS NOT TECHNICAL ENOUGH TO USE THIS TOOL
This is a misconception that needs to be shattered. The rise of AI is a watershed moment in technological history, akin to the advent of the Internet. AI is going to impact each and every aspect of our lives. Ignoring it would be as shortsighted as sales veterans clinging to their Rolodexes while shunning email. The reality is, that AI isn’t here to replace us; it’s here to augment our capabilities. And those who embrace AI will inevitably outpace those who don’t.
As for the perceived technical barriers, many AI tools, including ChatGPT, are designed to be user-friendly. They democratize access to technology, making what was once the exclusive domain of tech-savvy individuals accessible to virtually anyone. Can you believe that you can now write a functional piece of code from your phone, lounging in your chair on a cruise ship, in less than an hour—even though you have zero knowledge of how to code? This has been the biggest equalizer in our lifetimes. The AI can write the whole code for you, guide you through the entire compiling process, and before you know you are writing code just by telling what you want to AI.
With this technical expertise on your end, just imagine how powerful your teams can get. All they need is imagination and creative thinking and AI can create software applications and deliver content that takes your team places.
So, let’s put this myth to bed: You don’t need to be a tech wizard to harness the power of AI tools.
MYTH #4: AI POSES A THREAT TO MY ROLE OR MY BUSINESS.
The answer to this is nuanced—it’s both yes and no. Yes, AI could be a threat to organizations and individuals who remain stagnant, and who fail to adapt and harness the technology’s strengths. It’s also a potential pitfall for those who attempt to deploy it without the complementary power of human intellect. However, it’s not a threat to those who are agile and willing to evolve. Take higher education as an example; universities adapted to the Internet, and they’ll need to adapt to AI as well.
Far from being a menace, AI offers a treasure trove of opportunities for personal and professional growth. The list of things you can learn using AI is long. Yes, the learning curve will be steep on picking up any new skills, but the rewards will be immense—more importantly, the time and effort required to acquire those new skills will be 10 times less. All you need is motivation. On the business processes side, now you can expand your offerings, gather customer data by implementing a data analytics platform, and embark on digital transformation to further your business objectives all with minimal expenditure.
So, rather than viewing AI as a looming threat, consider it an open invitation to expand your horizons and grow.
NAVIGATING THE AI WAVE
Ride the AI wave, and talk to your software development team about how to incorporate AI in your current software development projects. If you are using a technology partner, discuss with them your vision to incorporate AI in your current and future software development projects, and ask them to showcase their expertise in this area. See if your custom software development partner has the expertise to take your business to the next level incorporating AI supporting business needs. If not, maybe it is time to do some research and find a new technology partner that can bring in AI expertise to help your enterprise software integration. Be excited but intentional. Adopt it but don’t rely on it. Remember, AI can’t exist on its own, it needs the human touch. Use it to grow personally and also your business. Don’t fear the possibility of it ever replacing you. AI is not here to make cuts based on automating people out of jobs; it is to enhance capabilities so that you can use the same force to offer more to your clients. This technology has the potential to usher in a new world, so let’s make sure it’s one in which we all want to live and thrive. Speaking as someone living in it now, our team at Luminous Tec can assure you it’s amazing. If you want to learn more about how Luminous Tec can be your trusted custom software development partner helping you integrate AI with your existing and future software development projects, contact us today.