Happy First Birthday ChatGPT – A Year in Wonderland

November 29, 2023 6 min Read

Coming up to the one-year anniversary of the unveiling of ChatGPT – November 30th 2022. It’s a pretty big deal. And I can’t help but play the where were you when? game. Reflecting on the location where seminal moments surfaced in our lives, global disasters, life moments. For me Generative AI came into focus driving to the mountains to ski and listening in awe about Sydney? Remember Sydney?

So let’s go down the rabbit hole.

As we mark the one-year anniversary of ChatGPT, we’ve reached a significant historical milestone. One that rivals the invention of Gutenberg’s printing press, gunpowder or antibiotics, general computing and the Internet. The introduction of generative AI (GenAI) is a game-changer for so many industries and we’re just getting started. As Dr. Lisa Palmer puts it, “AI is both the arsonist and the firefighter”.

In the past year alone we’ve seen the emergence of 7000 new AI tools and counting. Currently, more than 2 million developers are building on the OpenAI platform, while more than 100 million people use ChatGPT weekly, according to the San Francisco-based startup. Another notable stat is that ChatGPT acquired 1 million users just 5 days after launching last November. This made it the fastest-growing application in history until Threads took that crown in July 2023.

“About a year ago, November 30, we shipped ChatGPT as a low-key research preview,” Sam Altman told developers at a recent gathering in San Francisco. “That went pretty well,” he quipped in the understatement of the year.

A gold rush is happening but if you sit in corporate, how do you begin to navigate these waters? How do you use GenAI in a responsible way? Earlier this year, 451 Research’s Voice of the Enterprise: AI & Machine Learning, Infrastructure 2023 study asked execs to rank their top concerns regarding the infrastructure that hosts, or will host, AI/ML workloads. “Security” was ranked the highest, followed by cost and reliability.

Let’s face it: companies are made up of many individual communities, each with unique aspirations, expectations, and concerns when it comes to GenAI. The C-Suite is intrigued and cautious – eager to implement and reap the perceived benefits and expected lower costs; legal is running cautious, afraid of what employees will put into a platform prompt and not knowing where it goes and how it’s being used, along with other ethical issues; research is eager to tap into the universe of innovation; and the curious innovators across practically all functional areas are using it – whether anyone has sanctioned it or not (preferably the latter). And the CIO? The CIO is just trying to make everyone happy, balancing sometimes-conflicting perspectives and priorities from different groups and balancing GenAI with the ever-growing list of innovation projects and tech-debt remediation on their agenda.

Enterprises are actively seeking out guardrails that support AI policies and protect sensitive data while simultaneously giving employees access to the latest innovative technologies to explore and use. It all comes down to enabling responsible generative AI use without jeopardizing data security or availability.

Making that happen is a daunting task. With 7000+ applications out there, tight budgets, conflicting expectations from various groups, and skill challenges – it’s natural to be overwhelmed and discouraged.

It turns out that this type of challenge is what Expedient has navigated for the last 20+ years and garnered over 1,500 clients that recognize the value we deliver and bestow us with one of the highest retention rates in the industry. So, we are taking what we have done over the last 20 years for IT and cloud and are extending that to AI. Because it turns out that there is confluence between AI and IT infrastructure. As 451 Research (part of S&P Global Market Intelligence) noted “it is unsurprising that spending on infrastructure for AI/ ML will increase for the vast majority (almost 90%) of respondents’ enterprises. For a notable minority of respondents (16%), spending will increase by more than 50% — with a plurality of respondents predicting a moderate increase (25%-49%) in the next 12 months. These increases build on sizeable funds already invested in AI infrastructure, with 70% of respondents from organizations of more than 1,000 employees suggesting spending in the last 12 months exceeded $1 million, and 13% suggesting it exceeded $10 million.”

The great news is that we are already delivering on the vision. Internally, we are deploying tech across functional areas and use cases to accelerate experimentation and innovation. From those efforts, we will harvest learnings and imbue them into offerings that we’ll deliver to the market. These efforts will enable all organizations to shine a spot light on shadow AI. Our offering will deliver access to not just one AI platform but allow an organization to toggle across many based on the needs and preferences of each individual user. We marry that with a cloaking capability to assure that Personally Identifiable Information (PII) is not at risk of exposure, or inclusion in an LMM inadvertently. And all of this is tied to your corporate directory and logging to assure that you maximize innovation and simultaneously protect the company.

And, one more thing. Actually, four more things. We will be delivering solutions around Data Classification, AI-Ready Storage, Data Mover, Private AI Inference and more. We know it will be an exciting road ahead. And if the last year is any indication, we can expect things to shape shift in front of our eyes and in real-time. And we’re great with that, because that is the world we have navigated successfully for over 20 years.

To learn more about what we have shared publicly on our GenAI strategy in public webinars and get exclusive access to our coveted AI Success Kit – visit https://go.expedient.com/ai-success. Let me know what you think at tim.kounadis@expedient.com.

Oh, and Happy Birthday to ChatGPT!! Can’t wait to see what comes next!

Epilogue: The events that took place starting on Friday Nov 17th 2023 point to bumps ahead for OpenAI, ChatGPT, and Generative AI. But that’s what makes our collective world so interesting, no? Stay tuned!

Tim Kounadis Tim Kounadis

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