Back in 1999, in my early days of Web Development, building a website was still a skill reserved for only a few people.
In the following years though, thanks to the overall technology improvements, website building became a relatively easy task to achieve (for an average result at least), so now and then you would hear someone reply with “But my cousin (or friend) can do it for less money…” when presented with a professional offer and price, to build their website.
This saying has been heard several times, in many more contexts, such as Photography and Videography, and obviously, nowadays we hear it again about AI. The more technology advances in any field, the more such field (and the Craft behind it) becomes more “democratized”. What this means is that more people can use technology to skip all the learning, skill acquiring and experience once required to perform those specific activities, and still achieve a decent result (in most cases at least).
One common side-effect of this process is that the overall quality of that Craft and its products tend to diminish, and rarely goes above average work (not everyone that makes pictures is a photographer after all, and it shows).
Especially when dealing with new (and fast-changing) technology such as AI, it is always advisable to rely on a Specialist, or a Professional that will guarantee the quality of their work, and prevent you from making basic mistakes (that sometimes can cost a lot).
Recently, a Chevy car dealer website was offering a ChatGPT-like chatbot on their website (as many others do nowadays, following the recent GPT trend).
Unfortunately, someone forgot to add some special security instructions to their bot, which made it easily hackable (ever heard of the term “Prompt Hacking”?), and supposedly forced the dealer to sell a brand new car for only $1!
The above Tweet shows the chatbot hack.
Ultimately, it seems that this specific transaction did not occur, as the company immediately reached out to the buyer to apologize for the technology error, but this example shows how easy it is to get in trouble when dealing with new technologies, especially with AI and its fast pace!
Considering the latest Artificial Intelligence innovation of the past year (and weeks), between advances in LLMs (Large Language Models), such as the incredible improvement made by GPT4 (holding the record for best NLP – Natural Language Processing model), RAG (Retrieval Augmented Generation), and so many other recent prototypes and projects shared within the AI community, where even professionals have some challenge to keep up with all the advances, changes and new technology popping up weekly, a professional AI Consultant will be your best bet!
Even if you only want to put a chatbot on your website, and your cousin can do it for free!
And to keep this post very light, here is a funny analogy of the “do it cheaper” approach: