Founder Diary

February 7, 2023

AI anxiety

AI anxiety

AI is everywhere you go these days and you weren’t ready. Here’s why you shouldn’t panic about getting “replaced” any time soon.

The word "coronavirus" is at the top, crossed out. The word "AI is right below, within a red circle
The word "coronavirus" is at the top, crossed out. The word "AI is right below, within a red circle
The word "coronavirus" is at the top, crossed out. The word "AI is right below, within a red circle
Nikita Kazhin's headshot

Nikita Kazhin

Co-founder at Brick

X (formerly Twitter) logo

Hey 👋,

AI’s all the rage these days.

You’re not ready. You’re anxious you’ll “fall behind,” “get replaced,” or “lose your edge.”

AI’s one of those things that everyone and their mother knows is coming, but still catches you with your pants down when it finally arrives.

Because it’s nothing you could’ve imagined.

Like that time I spent three years (YEARS, Carl!) prepping to quit my job as a diplomat…

…only to find myself clueless when Brick saw the light of day 🤷

So, if abbreviations like ChatGPT, LaMDA, DALL·E or BERT give you the willies, you’re not alone.

I see countless people wondering:

What’s the point in learning?

What’s the point in working hard?

What if I’m just losing time trying to excel at coding/writing/marketing/design…

… if AI can do it all for me? I just need to know how to ask.

Why spend hours, sweat and tears, if all I need is one good command?

Why invest in perfecting my own art, if I can study the Art of the Prompt instead?

I don’t have all the answers.

But, if you let yourself see it, there IS light at end of the AI hype tunnel.

What (narrow) AI can do

AI excels at:

  • Aggregation

  • Data analysis (as in stupidly big data)

  • Trend spotting

  • Fake creativity (as in look over the shoulder, copy and rehash so it doesn’t look like your classmate’s work)

In other words, everything that involves processing and structuring existing work, information that’s already out there.

And that is extremely valuable. It can accelerate your learning, ideation, find mistakes in your work, and much more.

If you only do those things, you’ll probably be replaced eventually.

The good news is that I don’t think there are that many people who only do that.

What AI can’t do (now)

  • Have and understand its own unique experiences

  • Blend existing knowledge or data with those experiences

  • Know what works and what doesn’t work for you

  • Write, paint, invent, think, improvise, code like you do

  • Imagine things and tell stories that are completely new

And most importantly:

  • Come up with original ideas

  • Understand what your or its own work means

(Also, do math)

How does it affect you right now?

The million dollar question is then: Is it worth investing time in AI or my craft?

This isn’t a rhetorical question at all. I see quite a few people quit it all only to lose themselves in AI games.

Don’t do this.

Play with it…

Consider it a distraction that might help you improve. Maybe you’ll find ways to make your work a little better, ideate faster, or explore facets of your craft that you aren’t good at.

But never rely on it.

Yes, it’s a tool unlike any other, more powerful and advanced than we’ve ever had.

But, on second thought, isn’t it like that all the time? Radio, computer, iPhone, the Internet. Mind-blowing at first. But still just tools in the end.

…or don’t

It’s clear: We’re in the super early days.

We’re still figuring out how it all works.

It’ll take decades to find the best uses and adapt AI to our needs.

Rushing to jump on the bandwagon isn’t going to do you any good. Don’t get sidetracked just because (seemingly) everyone else is doing it.

And don’t listen to those who spell doom for everyone who isn’t on ChatGPT “RIGHT NOW!” Let them play.

You can come in later, learn from their mistakes, and still get good at it.

Being first to market is an advantage, sure, but way overrated.

AOL looked invincible in the 1990s. That didn’t stop Google from one upping them the next decade. And all the might of Google won’t stop the next bold newcomer (though ChatGPT probably isn’t that thing, yet).

What really matters in the end is that none of the advantages AI presents will ever replace YOU in whatever you do.

Hang in there. This, too, will pass.

Be the first to know what's new at Brick: