A year of AI: Insights and Planning for the future

The whirlwind of advancements in Artificial Intelligence (AI) over the past year has significantly impacted both our personal and professional landscapes. As an MSP, we’ve dabbled in various AI applications, uncovering innovative solutions to daily challenges. Here, we delve into our experiences with AI chatbots, venture into the new realms opened by Bing Chat, and cast a speculative eye towards the exciting unveiling of Microsoft Co-Pilot.

The Daily Dance with AI

AI chatbots have seamlessly blended into our daily operations, offering a spectrum of functionalities, including:

  1. Injecting Humour: A light-hearted joke from our chatbot often brightens our day amidst the technical toils.
  2. Festive Mixology: Crafting unique, themed cocktail recipes for special events is now a breeze with AI.
  3. Excel Mastery: AI can produce complex Excel formulas in a matter of seconds.
  4. Social Media Savvy: Crafting social media posts to share our recent blog posts across social media platforms is a smoother process.
  5. Academic Assistance: One team member at Heliocentrix has been using AI to help them prepare for an upcoming exam. By feeding ChatGPT the course syllabus document, the chatbot was able to ask questions, mark the answers and provide feedback based on the course requirements.

Bing Chat: Expanding Horizons

The recent launch of Bing Chat has brought a new dimension to in-browser interactions. Besides embodying ChatGPT’s capabilities, it adds a unique feature: the ability to ingest content from the pages you’re viewing, interacting with the internet to provide insightful responses or gather information. This opens clever use cases:

  1. Research Accelerator: Speed up online research by having Bing Chat summarise key points from multiple tabs or documents.
  2. Contextual Query Resolution: Get instant clarifications on complex or technical terms within the context of the current page.
  3. Content Extraction: Bing Chat can extract fragmented content from a page and provide it to you in a table format or as text.

Beyond Chatbots: Other AI Tools

AI’s scope extends beyond chatbots. There are now a wide variety of tools available that harness the power of AI to try and make you more productive. Tools like:

  1. Scribe: Helps you to create process guides in just a few minutes. We recently shared some details of Scribe as it’s a tool we regularly use. Read more here {scribe link}
  2. Canva: Canva has now integrated AI to not only help you produce the right text for your designs but also eye-catching imagery.
  3. Microsoft Designer: Microsoft has joined the party with their own AI design tool, which is intended for the creation of marketing materials, invitations and more.

These tools manifest AI’s capability to streamline operations, enhance creativity, and propel productivity.

Peering into the Future: Microsoft Co-Pilot

Microsoft Co-Pilot, unveiled earlier in March this year, is an ambitious project aimed at being a virtual, personal assistant for users. Slated for general availability from 1st November, Co-Pilot is designed to work seamlessly across all Microsoft Products, assisting users in a myriad of tasks to improve productivity and efficiency. With its integration capabilities extending to other well-known products outside the Microsoft ecosystem, Co-Pilot aims to redefine how users interact with software applications, making the working process more streamlined and intuitive.

Regarding the cost, it’s projected to come with a price tag of £25 per user per month, which could be a significant investment, especially for larger teams or organisations. The anticipation surrounding Microsoft Co-Pilot is immense, with many in the industry keen to evaluate its potential in real-world scenarios.

We haven’t yet had the opportunity to get our hands on Co-Pilot to put it through its paces. When we do, we will be sure to let you know whether we think it’s worth the hype, and the price tag!

Wrapping Up

AI’s development so far has been one that we’ve watched with keen interest. We don’t know what the future holds but we will certainly continue to watch the evolution of this technology.

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