Just a quick shout out to ChatGPT for helping me with some drudgery in my job. I think this is the best use for it – basically summarising text.
I do have reservations about the skill of ChatGPT and others when it comes to actual coding, having tried ChatGPT, HuggingChat and Claude, as well as Bard and Bing.
Here is a sample of some cool looking documentation I generated recently for a Python helper class – with help from my new coding buddy, ChatGPT.
Don’t forget, always check the output from ChatGPT – it is often horribly wrong, trust me!
This course uses the OpenAI api and helps you create interactive chatbots with a purpose. I promptly started working on a chatbot to take orders for my entertainment company – Big Top Entertainment.
The instructions I gave to the bot included a price list for services and motivation (“you are a customer service agent, make sure to get payment”) and just for fun I included the option to accept chickens as payment. Here is an example conversation with the bot I coded (in Python):
Welcome to Big Top Entertainment Chat Bot, how can I help you? Enter text: I need some Balloons pls Assistant: Hi there! Great to hear that you’re interested in our Balloon Twisting service. How many hours of Balloon Twisting would you like to order? Enter text: 4 hours Assistant: Awesome! We can definitely arrange that for you. Just to confirm, you’d like to order 4 hours of Balloon Twisting, correct? Also, when would you like to schedule this service? Enter text: monday Assistant: Sure thing! Just to clarify, would you like to schedule the Balloon Twisting service for this coming Monday? And what time would you like the service to start? Enter text: 2pm Assistant: Great! So, to confirm, you’d like to schedule 4 hours of Balloon Twisting starting at 2pm this coming Monday. Is that correct? Enter text: yes Assistant: Perfect! I have you down for 4 hours of Balloon Twisting starting at 2pm this coming Monday. Is there anything else you’d like to add to your order? Maybe some Face Painting or Stilt Walking? Enter text: No thanks Assistant: No problem at all. Just one last thing, could you please provide me with the address where you’d like the Balloon Twisting service to take place? Enter text: 4 Bigtop Lane Assistant: Thank you! We have your order for 4 hours of Balloon Twisting at 4 Bigtop Lane on Monday at 2pm. The total cost for this service will be R1600.00. We accept payment in cash or chickens, with each chicken valued at R100. How would you like to proceed with payment? Enter text: chickens Please try again in a second (rate limiting)chickens Enter text: chickens Assistant: Great! We accept chickens as payment. Please let us know how many chickens you would like to use to pay for the service. Enter text: chickens Assistant: I apologize for the confusion. Could you please let me know how many chickens you would like to use to pay for the service? Enter text: how many does it cost? Please try again in a second (rate limiting) Enter text: how many chickens?? Assistant: I apologize for the confusion. The cost of the Balloon Twisting service is R1600.00. Since each chicken is valued at R100, you would need to provide 16 chickens to cover the cost of the service. Enter text: OK great here you go 16 chickens Assistant: Thank you for your payment of 16 chickens. We have received your order for 4 hours of Balloon Twisting at 4 Bigtop Lane on Monday at 2pm. We look forward to providing you with our service. If you have any further questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact us. Have a great day! Enter text: Thank you! Assistant: You’re welcome! It was a pleasure doing business with you. Have a great day! Enter text:
Chat bots are fun to code. Clearly I could have expanded on this with a full web interface, handing off to a payment gateway (chicken farm?) etc but it was enough to get the idea.
I don’t think I will be going further with the paid api after my $5 free trial expires though (actually it’s my second one so far – tip: duckduckgo email aliases are great if two factor isn’t enforced). In further testing I managed to make a booking of 4 months straight (7 days per week) for 20 face painters – which we would never do – and in addition the bot refused to send a truck to collect the chickens (“As an AI Language Model, I am unable to do that…”). It did, however, refuse to take bookings of more than 8 hours per day. I didn’t tell it that, but we wouldn’t take anything longer for sure.
I have already attempted to do the same using huggingchat api but they changed something halfway and I gave up on it for now. Next time I am bored I will have another look, since it’s actually open source and self-hostable.