It Feels Late, But it’s Not

AI-empowered woman

The more things change, the more they stay the same, especially when it comes to tech revolutions. Massive shifts like AI are nothing we haven’t seen in the past. Think about the telegraph or the assembly line – these weren’t just inventions, they were game-changers that totally reshaped how we work and live. It’s like we’re in the middle of another one of those big shifts with AI.

Some people think AI will be bigger than the Internet. For those of you of a certain age, you remember what the world was like before we were online.

But here’s the thing: it’s still early days. If you’re feeling a bit overwhelmed by all the AI buzz, you’re not alone. We’re all in this boat together, trying to figure out how to navigate these uncharted waters. The key is not to panic. Just like people learned to adapt to the telegraph and the Internet, we’re learning how to make AI work for us.

I recently read an article from “One Useful Thing,” it’s clear that the integration of AI into our work environments is not just a fleeting trend but a significant shift in how we approach organizational structures and processes.

The article highlights how AI, particularly Large Language Models (LLMs) like GPT-4, are uniquely suited to handle tasks at a human scale, such as reading documents, writing emails, and assisting with projects. This capability is already being leveraged in various ways, often without formal approval from higher-ups, indicating a grassroots adoption of AI within organizations.

For instance, at Wharton Interactive (a group within Wharton business school), AI is used extensively, from generating documentation to assisting in coding and ideation. This has effectively expanded the team’s capabilities at a fraction of the cost.

But the real challenge lies in reimagining our work processes to fully harness AI’s potential. The article provides a compelling example of how a feature design process for an educational game can be transformed by AI, reducing a week-long process to just a couple of days. This involves using AI for initial feedback, synthesizing team inputs, creating visual prototypes, and even recording and summarizing meetings.

As we embrace AI, it’s crucial to let teams develop their own AI integration methods, build for the rapidly evolving AI landscape, and act swiftly to avoid falling behind. In the face of exponential change, one can only be too early or too late. Given the pace at which AI is evolving, it seems prudent to start adapting now, rather than risk being left behind.

News at the Intersection of AI and Design

🥷 More than Half of Global Generative AI Adopters Use Unapproved Tools at Work

Continuing on the trend of adopting AI, Salesforce’s survey on the use of generative AI in the workplace reveals some thought-provoking trends and concerns. Here’s a quick rundown:

  • Widespread but Unregulated Use of AI: Over a quarter of workers globally are using generative AI at work, often without formal employer approval. This trend is accompanied by a notable lack of clear policies or guidelines for AI use in various industries, particularly in healthcare​​.
  • Recognizing AI’s Impact on Careers: Workers see mastering generative AI as a way to advance their careers, believing it can increase job satisfaction and potential earnings. However, there’s a pressing need for businesses to provide guidance and training to ensure responsible and ethical use of AI technologies​​.
  • h/t to Aaron Hassen 

Read more

🧮 ChatGPT Prompt Frameworks

Shelly Palmer’s article focuses on how prompt crafting enhances AI interactions, ensuring more precise outcomes. Let’s break it down:

  • Enhancing AI Interaction through Structured Prompts: Prompt engineering helps structure interactions with AI, leading to clearer communication and more relevant results. By breaking down tasks into AI-friendly components, users can align AI responses more closely with their expectations.
  • Building AI Proficiency and Critical Thinking: Using prompt frameworks not only improves immediate AI interactions but also helps users understand AI capabilities better, fostering critical thinking and effective communication.
  • h/t Bruce Scheer

See the frameworks now

ℚ Amazon Q: Amazon has entered the (AI) chat

Amazon’s Adam Selipsky unveiled Amazon Q, an AI-powered assistant designed to enhance workplace productivity, at the AWS re:Invent conference.

  • Versatile AI Tool for Various Work Tasks: Amazon Q helps users with chatting, content generation, and taking actions, integrating with company systems and respecting existing security protocols.
  • Expertise in AWS and Content Creation: The tool is trained with extensive AWS knowledge, assisting in building and managing applications, generating code, and even upgrading and maintaining code efficiently.

Keep reading

New Resources for you
Man looking at map

Hopefully you know by now that I talk about creating content with generative AI. The images you see above were created with Midjourney (and a little Photoshop).

If you want to try Midjourney but don’t know where to start, I’ve created a simple how-to guide.

Let me know what you think!

How can I help you?

If you want to learn more about what’s available, here are some links:

Thanks for reading!


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Jim MacLeod

Jim MacLeod

Jim MacLeod was a graphic designer for more than a decade before pivoting to adjacent areas of focus such as marketing, digital experience, and branding. Knowing that AI is going to displace many graphic designers, Jim set up After Design to help designers prepare for this impending change. 

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