Can ChatGPT replace futurists?

I am well aware of the problems with ChatGPT and its limitations. But it is surprisingly good at doing ordinary everyday writing tasks. I like to think that I have always given clients stuff they couldn’t get off google in a 10 minute search, and it would be original ideas, not something ChatGPT would produce (yet), but I also am aware that much of the previous stuff I and other futurists have put out there has already been sucked in to the chatbot training datasets, so to some degree, we are competing against our former selves. So futurists will have to keep thinking up brand new ideas if they want to be more valuable than 2 minutes on ChatGPT.

I often get commissions for what industry X will look like in a few years, albeit fewer now that I’m retired. In this example, it’s the future of cruises. Any junior employee of the client, of any background, could now produce a piece like this in 2 minutes at zero other cost, and often it would be enough for their needs.

Worse than that, frankly, I’ve seen very expensive reports from futures consultancies that have shown less originality, mentioning no names. The low end of the profession is very much threatened.

Finally, if I was a client sending a project brief to a futures consultancy tomorrow, I’d make sure to include some equivalent ChatGPT output and specify that I didn’t just want these same old ideas paraphrased, I want fresh new material. Futures consultancies won’t be able to get away with charging for 5 pages of padding and cut-and-paste Google searches before they add their own material.

So here’s what 2 minutes of your secretary’s time gives you:

how will cruises change in the future

Cruises have already undergone significant changes in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, and it’s likely that many of these changes will persist in the future. Here are some potential ways that cruises may change in the coming years:

  1. Health and safety protocols: Cruise lines will likely continue to implement rigorous health and safety protocols to protect passengers and crew members from the spread of illnesses. This could include measures such as enhanced cleaning and disinfection, mandatory testing and vaccination requirements, and changes to dining and entertainment options to allow for social distancing.
  2. Focus on outdoor activities: Cruises may place a greater emphasis on outdoor activities, such as shore excursions and outdoor dining, to reduce the risk of transmission indoors. Cruise lines may also invest in more open-air areas on ships, such as outdoor promenades and lounges.
  3. Shorter itineraries: In the short term, we may see a shift towards shorter cruises that visit nearby ports of call, rather than longer cruises that visit multiple countries. This could help to reduce the risk of exposure to COVID-19 and allow for more flexibility in case of changing travel restrictions.
  4. Increased sustainability efforts: There is growing awareness of the environmental impact of the cruise industry, and cruise lines may make greater efforts to reduce their carbon footprint and implement sustainable practices. This could include using cleaner fuels, reducing waste, and implementing more efficient ship designs.
  5. Use of technology: Cruise lines may use technology to enhance the guest experience and reduce contact between passengers and crew members. For example, we may see more use of mobile apps for check-in and booking, touchless payment systems, and virtual entertainment options.

It’s important to note that these changes are speculative and may vary depending on the cruise line and the region of the world. However, it’s likely that the COVID-19 pandemic will continue to influence the way we travel, including the way we experience cruises.

what about entertainment on board, and new technology

Entertainment on board cruise ships may also change in the future, as cruise lines adapt to changing guest preferences and new technologies. Here are some potential ways that entertainment on board may change:

  1. Virtual entertainment: As we’ve seen during the pandemic, virtual entertainment options such as livestreamed concerts and shows can be a great way to keep guests entertained without requiring them to gather in large groups. Cruise lines may continue to offer more virtual entertainment options in the future, such as interactive games and activities that guests can access through their smartphones or in-room TVs.
  2. Personalized experiences: New technologies such as artificial intelligence and machine learning can help cruise lines personalize the guest experience by suggesting activities, meals, and other options based on guests’ preferences and past behavior. For example, a cruise line could use AI to recommend shows or events that a guest is likely to enjoy, or suggest activities that match their fitness level or interests.
  3. Augmented reality: Augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) could be used to enhance the guest experience on board, by providing virtual tours of destinations, creating interactive gaming experiences, or even transforming the ship’s public spaces with digital displays and interactive art.
  4. Sustainable entertainment: As more guests become interested in sustainability, cruise lines may offer entertainment options that reflect this trend, such as eco-friendly themed shows or educational programs about the environment and local cultures.

Overall, entertainment on board cruise ships will likely continue to evolve in response to changing guest preferences and new technologies. By using innovative approaches, cruise lines can provide guests with engaging and memorable experiences while also enhancing their safety and well-being on board.

It may not threaten half-decent futurists yet, but the bottom 50% had better watch out.


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