There has been a wildfire of online interest in ChatGPT over the last couple of days. The software possesses no insights, intuition or understanding and yet its relative eloquence is compelling. What truly fascinates me about all the effervescing interest in this particular language model is that its primary effect has been the generation of more language – in, around and about itself.
The center of gravity in all of this communications technology and cognitive reflexivity is not the software, not the antipodes of mind or machine. The center is the extent to which both poles are essentially transmission medium for a complex shockwave of information and communication (or energy by any other name) that maximally self-propagates as a function of the extent to which we are seduced by it, never quite able to obtain closure in anything other than the most trivial of circumstances.
It is language (and other technology) that benefits most from the uncertainty that it itself invokes, even as it dissimulates teleological closure and intelligence in these software tools. The paradox of an eternally incomplete self-definition in or of language (and intelligence) is that our inability to obtain closure with this primary medium and technology of communication guarantees its own sustainable continuity through us.