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What is your personal view on AI for assisting research?

Hello everyone,

This theme has been discussed previously, but I'm approaching it from the perspective of knowledge work and research. What are your personal views on AI, specifically ChatGPT and related models, in relation to how we engage with knowledge and conduct research?

Recently, I had the opportunity to work with ChatGPT-4. I've been inputting numerous academic papers for analysis and summarization. From my perspective, this is one of its most valuable applications. I'm exploring worlds of CFS and Fibromyalgia, and as someone who isn't currently in academia (though I have past experience), ChatGPT has empowered me to undertake my own research. I believe I can do so reliably, evaluating various sources to draw practical, science-based conclusions. It has also allowed me to simplify complex topics by explaining concepts in clear, jargon-free language.

A couple of additional questions: Are there any drawbacks to this approach? How do you engage with these models, if at all?

Thriving with fibromyalgia by becoming a pain expert.


  • For research, hmm. I did get a couple of pointers in rough directions, like patterns or design ideas that I didn't know of before, which I could then look into proper. Worked well for that. On some level, it's like a Wikipedia chat bot :)

    The summaries and short explanations to get you started are the killer feature for me when I reach for that tool. I do use ChatGPT as an editor to make short texts less weird (like job postings/searching for freelancers) than what I'd produce on my own.

    I'm not on board with what happened to source code in my field: that LLMs like GitHub's gobbled up everything that was meant to be private, and spitting out copies of code without regard for any license. (This violates free software licenses, for example, that permit use but only if you share the result. Even if you wanted to adhere to the original license, you can't know what the LLM's source was.)

    Author at Zettelkasten.de • https://christiantietze.de/

  • I use OpenAI's ChatGPT for research in my 'Air Quality, Pollution & Smoke' class. It is like @ctietze says ' a Wikipedia chatbot' only as of yesterday, it can include the entire web. I can seed it with a question. When it responds. I can interegate it with more questions.

    I am exploring ways to improve my writing with OpenAI's ChatGPT as a tutor without it becoming a crutch. I am responsible for my writing, as it is a reflection of my thinking. Outsourcing my thinking is not an option at this time.

    Will Simpson
    My zettelkasten is for my ideas, not the ideas of others. I will try to remember this. I must keep doing my best even though I'm a failure. My peak cognition is behind me. One day soon, I will read my last book, write my last note, eat my last meal, and kiss my sweetie for the last time.

  • I use perplexty.ai and elicit.org to give my research a head start for each question. But to me, AI is practically useless to process papers because it is not trustworthy in my experience.

    I am a Zettler

  • AI is useless for analysis or summarisation. AI is going to have an impact on scientific work, making it more affordable for complex projects.

    my first Zettel uid: 202008120915

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