Episode 62 New AI Developments and Executive Functions

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Erica: Welcome to the Personal Brain Trainer podcast. I'm Doctor Erica Warren.

Darius: And I'm Darius Namdaran. And we're your hosts. Join us on an adventure to translate scientific jargon and brain research into simple metaphors and explanations for everyday life. We explore executive function and learning strategies that help turbo charge the mind.

Erica: Come, learn to steer around the invisible barriers. So that you can achieve your goals. This podcast is ideal for parents, educators, and learners of all ages. This podcast is brought to you by goodsensorylearning.com, where you can find educational and occupational therapy lessons and remedial materials that bring delight to learning. Finally, you can find Doctor Warren's many courses at, learningspecialistcourses.com dot. Come check out our newest course on developing executive functions and study strategies.

Darius: This podcast is sponsored by dyslexiaproductivitycoaching.com. We give you a simple productivity system for your Apple devices that harnesses the creativity that comes with your dyslexia.

Erica: Darius, it's great to see you, and I know you're going to be very.

Erica: Happy with this topic because whenever we go down the AI rabbit hole, you're always happy. Acclaimed. So today we are talking about AI development and executive functioning.

Darius: Yeah, I'm really looking forward to talking more about AI. It's going to be great.

Erica: Awesome. I think we're going to focus the topic on chat, GPT, and storied, which is a new AI tool, but I'm sure we'll probably hit on some other ones too.

Darius: Yeah, I think there's one kind of area to really concentrate on to get the meta picture of AI and executive function and just tie in with that before we go into the details. You know, executive function, as we've been talking about, is about being the conductor of an orchestra. And it's a very good analogy to start linking in with AI, because the future of human beings and AI is that we are going to become conductors of AI's, not just one AI, but multiple AI's, interconnecting with one another. And we are going to be there as listening to the result, the harmony, to make sure it's playing the music we have orchestrated it to do. So. What's going to happen is people are going to move from being the number one violinist in the orchestra and the AI will take over that role of playing the violin, and you will become the conductor and you will conduct all of the instruments. That's a bit of a mind shift that's happening on a very practical level. But that basically is what executive function is. Executive function is rising up to that level where you are orchestrating multiple systems, multiple things that are happening in your life, in your world, and ending up with a result. Or another analogy would be the captain of a ship. You've got different people in the crew. You might not be steering the wheel, but you're making sure you're staying on the right course. We've talked about this in the past as another metaphor. You've got working memory, inhibitory control, and cognitive flexibility on the boat. You're the captain of the boat. This is the same thing that's going to happen with AI. We've got lots of different AIs, and it's going to compel us to become better at executive function.

Erica: Yeah, I think what it does is it gives us tools so that we can externalize some of our cognitive processing. We can externalize our working memory and expand it. So if we, for example, have a weak working memory, we can only hold maybe two, three items. We now can actually utilize it as an external working memory support. And I think we can definitely explore how it can really support all aspects of executive functioning. So it's really exciting, and the thing that's most exciting to me is AI is coming out in many different flavors. We have AI where you type, and we have AI where you speak, and there's AI that is really focused primarily on organization, and some of it is visual, some of it is auditory. And it's really exciting to see how AI is expanding and helping us to process in multiple ways. So initially it was really just a writing tool, which was really kind of a tactile processing tool. But now it's really expanding out into all of the different ways of processing, which is super exciting because that makes it more inclusive and more diverse and more supportive to accommodating all the different ways of processing that we have.

Darius: Yeah, absolutely. So let's drill down into some examples. What's on? I know you're really excited about storied as an AI tool. Tell me a bit about this. You've been interviewing the creator of it.

Erica: Yeah, Nick Koshnick. What a fun guy. I really appreciate the level of excitement and innovative thinking that he has, and that's gone into that. And I don't think he would mind me saying that he's part of the dyslexia club, because he has announced that in some of my interviews that are on YouTube with him anyway. So I think he's a proud owner of that badge, as we are as well. And so I had that ultimate connection with him. But it was really interesting because I initially reached out to him because I thought I would like to videotape him and I talking about how this supports executive functioning. But it was really interesting that the more we drilled down, the more richness we found in storied, because with storied is an AI app where you can speak. So you can speak to your phone or to the computer, and it captures your ideas. But he's integrated some other really beautiful features into storied. Storied will also ask you questions. So when you pause, it will basically ask you if you want a question or whether you just want to continue or whether you want to stop. And it asks really smart questions because it's based on what you've already said, or it might sense that you're missing. There's a gap, and it identifies gaps. The other thing is, once it has generated some writing, he's integrated other features, like choose the main idea. So if you click on that area, it comes up with a bunch of different main idea options based on what you said. But then it also gives you the option to say, no, that's not it. Actually, this is my main idea. And when you explain that to AI, then it changes your writing again. So it's constantly reorganizing it and really allows you to reorchestrate, as you were saying, with that, beautiful metaphor that we love so much, reorchestrate your writing. It also has a dropdown of changing the document type. So say you were writing a letter to somebody, and then you're like, my goodness, this would make an amazing blog. Then you can just change it very quickly. That way it also reads back your writing. So, for example, I know that when I edit visually, it's very different than editing auditorily because I wouldn't see the distinction between from and form, but I absolutely hear it. So if I write form, I can hear from, and I'm like, oh, that's not it. And I love that he's integrated that feature into it. He's always integrating and massaging in new and exciting little bits and pieces that I really appreciate. But yeah, the asking of the questions, I think, is one of my favorites. But what appeals to me so much, he gave me this little tip and trick on how to be able to put it onto my phone. And my favorite thing is walking and talking. So you could go on a walk, and you can process while you're walking. And for those kinesthetic processors, it's brilliant because you can kind of take it anywhere with you. And when we started to think about, let's see, does it tap into this type of processing? Is it visual? It can be visual because it does create images if you choose it to.

Erica: Is it auditory?

Erica: Absolutely. Because you can hear back your thoughts. Let's see, is it tactile? It can be. If you want to type, it will take your typing and allow you to make changes. Is it kinesthetic, as we said, absolutely. Because you can walk and talk. Is it sequential? Yes, because you can ask it to reorganize it in a sequential or a simultaneous way. So that takes the care of those.

Erica: It allows you to think about your thinking because it asks you questions, which is logical, reflective. It allows you to verbalize, obviously, which is its best and most powerful feature. I'm literally going through all the different ways of processing. Is it rhythmic, melodic? I suppose it's not rhythmic, melodic, but it does offer indirect experience somewhat by interacting with you and could, give you examples. And it is obviously direct experience. So it is a multi-processing tool, which I'm super excited about. So it's pretty cool. It's a lot of fun. I highly recommend it. Right now it's free because I guess they're still working on it and testing it out.

Erica: But it's.

Erica: It's very robust and works very nicely.

Erica: So I highly recommend it.

Erica: I would, I will. What we'll do is we'll put the link in the show notes so people can find it.

Darius: Absolutely. Yeah. Yeah.

Erica: I think it's storied work is, I believe the URL.

Darius: Okay, storied work. So how are you using AI at the moment yourself?

Erica: Personally, it's interesting that you say that. I use it for almost everything. Yeah, I usually write out an email and then I'll drop it into chat GPT and just say, do you have any suggestions on how to make this better? Why not? Right? And even if it's just something as simple as a thank you note or scheduling an appointment because it edits, but it also takes it up a notch. And I'm like, oh yes, that's a much better way of saying that.

Darius: Yes.

Erica: It makes me feel a little bit more eloquent, but it also speeds up my processing significantly. So I think that when it came to writing for everybody, it can be time consuming. But now I feel like I can just stream of consciousness, whether I'm using storied or chat GPT, stream of consciousness. Just go. And sometimes I'll use them both. Right. And because I'll think I'll do something in storied and say, oh, let's see what chat GPT can do with this, and it becomes a competition. Like, which one do I like better? Oh, I like the fact that story doesn't use the word delved all the time or delves. But sometimes I like what chat GPT comes up with. But yeah, it's pretty nice. I really love it for those moments where I'm feeling triggered by an email and I'm a little bit too emotionally involved and perhaps a little angry or hurt, and I want to respond quickly, but there's just too much of that hurt or anger coming through or whatever, that I need the space away, but I don't have the time. So I can drop it into chat GPT and say, I got this email, I'm feeling a little triggered. This is what I want to say, but I need to, I know I need to tone it down. Can you help me with this? Really, really good at that.

Darius: Yeah.

Erica: You know what's great for things like preparing, even for an IEP meeting, are creating goals for an IEP. It's really good at that because it might think of something that you hadn't thought of or have a new angle or have a new accommodation, or even writing a recommendation for a student where you say, all right, these are all the things I love about my student. Boom, boom, boom, boom, boom, boom, boom, boom, boom. Now organize that in a format that flows really beautiful for a recommendation for blah, blah, blah. Then it still takes my ideas. I don't want it to generate ideas, I want my ideas. But it just allows me to get through the writing process so much faster.

Darius: Yes. And it sort of allows more space for you to be more of a conductor than a musical, ah, instrument player. You're not playing the instrument perfectly. It can play the instrument, which is the articulation of sentences and so on, saying what you've already told it to say. But then you can spend time refining things so that it's even better.

Erica: I now don't get bogged down in spelling because I would say I'm a good speller, but there are just times where I'm like, how do you spell that? But then that gets in the way of my flow and then I lose my flow and I don't have to stop and look up something or anything of that sort. So it really does help you to stay in a state of flow.

Darius: I love that. I mean, I think that's so important, that state of flow you know, my wife has this phrase that she uses in her coaching a lot, which is performance equals potential minus interference. And what that means is if you want to perform at a high level, you need to realize your potential and reduce the interference. And so the biggest gain is not by increasing your potential, your biggest gain is by reducing the interference. And once you get the interference down to very low or zero, you can then put your efforts into increasing potential, because the payoff for reducing interference to your performance is massive. And so that's what chat GPT is doing there is reducing interference, allowing, you to stay in that state of flow. It's fantastic. Have you tried perplexity at all?

Erica: I haven't. Tell me about perplexity.

Darius: Well, so perplexity is rapidly becoming, I would say, one of the second most popular AI powered apps in the world, next to chat GPT. It's rapidly rising. And basically what perplexity does is it searches the Internet for you and summarizes, it's like Google search on speed. So let's say I wanted to research Dr. Erica Warren and her games, okay? What it will do is you'll type in Dr. Erica Warren and her executive function games, okay, and it will go and read 18 to 24 different Google pages that are relevant to you. So it will create a smart search like Dr. Erica Warren plus this and that and find those what it thinks are the top 18 to 24 pages. Read them, then it will summarize everything that it's got from those 18 pages. And for each sentence, it will reference with a little number the actual website that it got it from, M. Okay, so it's not making stuff up, it's actually referencing the pages and you see something interesting, and you go, oh, gosh, I didn't realize she made one for dyscalculia, you know, and you go, click on it. Gosh, it is for dyscalculia. And it does this and it does that and so on. So perplexity is just incredibly useful when you want to get some really meaningful answers from Google search. Because at the moment, Google search is just a pain in the butt because you're just searching through spammy kind of websites who are just trying to gain the algorithm and try and look at all these reviews and try and dominate that keyword. But it's filtering through all of that and raising the actual Erica Warren content that answering your questions, you can read through the summary, identify the chunks that are useful, and go deep on them.

Erica: You know, I'm curious. There was some time where I was on Google, and it asked me if I wanted to activate AI. Did you ever get that option?

Darius: Yes. So Google are activating Gemini, their new AI. I think it used to be called Bard and now it's been renamed to Gemini. Yeah. So I don't use it. I prefer perplexity. So I highly recommend having a shot at perplexity. It's like having your own research assistant, but it's properly referenced. Right. You can do things like this through anthropic. Anthropic Claude does really well and researching thing on the Internet, but it doesn't reference things as much. Have you come across its new model, which is Claude Opus or Claude three? Claude from anthropic have just released a model that is better than GPT four on a number of things and that was three weeks ago. Four weeks ago. So they've got a large model, a medium model, and a small model. The small model can fit on a phone, medium model can fit on a laptop, and the large model can fit on a supercomputer. And it writes really beautifully, and it writes really, really well. And often better than anything else. Really.

Erica: Do you, have it?

Darius: Yes.

Erica: Give a membership.

Darius: It's free.

Erica: It's free. Last time I was on Claude, it would let me ask one question and then it said that because I didn't have a paid version, I couldn't do anything else. So I started to move away Claude because I have a membership for chat GPT. But you know, you start to wonder like which one should I use?

Darius: Absolutely. And that's going to be a challenge moving forward. Some people are going with perplexity. Okay. And perplexity's been very clever because what they've done is for the same fee as chat GPT, 20 pounds a month. You can have unlimited perplexity, but you can go into perplexity not in the search mode, but just in chat mode. And then you can choose whichever model, Claude three, GPT four, open source, Lama, whatever, and you can do the same chat with a different model in the same interface.

Erica: What do you mean by that? I mean I can access all of them.

Darius: Yeah.

Erica: For free?

Darius: No, for the pound 20 a month subscription.

Erica: Oh, so you can access all of them with Perplexity?

Darius: Yes.

Erica: Oh well, that sounds like a winner.

Darius: Well I think that’s the future of AI. One way of thinking about AI and this revolution that is coming towards us rapidly, really. Only about 5% of the world really know about chat GPT and use AI. You know, it's not that much yet. Okay. Although we're talking about it, most people aren't using it, and many people don't even know about it. They haven't even heard it. So it's like the advent of electricity, and it's like the electrification of the world that happened 100 years ago. And you get different electricity providers. You get some electricity that comes from a battery, some electricity that comes from the mains, and we're finding that with AI as well. So that little model that Claude does for the phone, that's like the battery version of electricity. It's a small amount of electricity to do a small power up. And we think AI is going to become so ubiquitous that you're going to switch energy providers and you're going to go, this is a better energy provider for me, electricity provider, gas provider. Sometimes you get butane gas in a canister, or sometimes you get it piped into your house, depending on your circumstances, etcetera. So the route that AI is going down is that it's going to be quite hard. They're going to end up being so good, it's going to be hard to tell the difference, and it's going to come down to how usable it is. So the future is very much in the world of perplexity, where you can plug in whatever provider you want into that one supplier.

Erica: That's really cool. Now let me ask you, what do you have memberships for?

Darius: I just have membership for chat GPT, actually, and I use the perplexity one's got quite a generous daily usage on it. I think you can do like 20 searches a day and it does really good or something like that. Ten or whatever. I sometimes max it out and I feel sad, but then I just have to wait. But that's okay, basically. Perplexity and chat GPT. Now what it's really. So I think let's talk about executive function in relation to this. Okay. And I think there's something about inhibitory control that we need to sort of bear in mind with regard to all these models, because you can start thinking, I'm going to use this model, I'm going to use that model, I'm going to do this, I'm going to do that. And you can get sort of frazzled by how many different models there are out there, like storied and so on. There are so many different models.  I'm creating an AI app at the moment, a mind mapping app with AI in it that you can instantly mind map anything that you give it. It is a company called iVVi or iVVi app. And we're developing that in the background right now with clients in a beta test at the moment. And a lot of my journey on that is to learn how to be a prompt engineer. And what's going to happen is people are going to go from being computer coders to prompt engineers. A prompt engineer is someone who can speak to an AI and instruct it with such clarity and focus that it will achieve the goal that you set it, which is basically executive function. This is your goal. This is what I want you to do. These are the resources I want you to use. This is the process I want you to follow. And this is the end result I'm expecting from you. And I'm going to reward you if you do this, and I'm going to penalize you if you do that. Do you understand the rules of the game? And, the AI, ah, is like, yeah, I understand. Thanks for making it clear. And it will get to the goal much better if you understand how it responds to instructions.

Erica: We know it's so interesting, so we're helping AI to be more focused, but as AI then gives us back what we are looking for, we're then able to focus ourselves because we say, like, oh, that's not what I meant. That's what I said. what I really meant was this. So it is an absolutely fantastic tool. And that's what Nick Koshnick did with the main idea. Is this your main idea, or is this your main idea, or is this your main idea, or did I miss it all together?

Darius: Yes.

Erica: So that it's constantly pulling you in and pulling you out, pulling you in and pulling you out so that you're like, all right, am I getting all the details? Do I have the main idea?

Darius: Absolutely. And if you think about our kind of model that we've developed in this podcast over with, regard to processing, the relationship of processing to executive function, if you have difficulties in processing, you've got difficulties with dyslexia, dysgraphia, dyscalculia, all these different processes, but then on top of that, you've got the executive functions, and if you have difficulties with working memory or inhibitor control, whatever that can be related to ADHD, how do these two relate? And the same thing is happening with AI. So the AI is a processing machine. It's a guessing machine that's guessing what the next step is, what the next keyword is, what the next step in the process is so it's basically a really linear thinker. You know, it thinks in straight lines, in sequences. Yes, it can act like it's creative, but actually it's not essentially creative. And that's the beauty of them. I think that's where you can mine these. AI's to be that sort of procedural element of doing something in your life, and it gives you that feedback. You've got the yin and the yang, you've got the creative, you've got the logical. So it goes, right, well, these are the logical steps. And you go, well, yeah, that's true. And it's processing that. That's processing the logical steps. But then you can creatively reflect back on that and go, no, we're not heading in the right direction there. Okay, let's change direction. And so you've got this balance. And I think that's why it's so helpful for people like us who, who really live in this realm of the right hemisphere of the brain, that creative, wide angled 360 view of the world that has to work with the other side, which is the logical, systematic one. We've now got the logical, systematic one being operated in parallel with AI, which can really help us get good feedback.

Erica: This is funny, listening to you. It made me think of one of my favorite therapies. And it's a couple’s therapy called Imago, and it's a way of communicating with your partner. It basically teaches you to be a great listener and to ask thoughtful questions, but also to reflect back on what you've heard so that your partner knows that you've heard it correctly.

Darius: And then you are always active listening.

Erica: I suppose it's a probably another way of looking at it, but it's also. It's the whole process. And then, of course, you always say, is there more? And then give that person an opportunity to say more. And then you reflect back. And then you can even say things like, when you go through that, I imagine you might feel blank, you might feel sad, and then they can say, like, either yes or no. Actually, that's not how I feel at all. It's reminding me of AI, because you can basically do the same thing where it's this negotiation back and forth of it, understanding what you're trying to communicate and reflecting back and you saying yes or no. Actually, it's not quite it. It's this. So that there's this constant where you're working together to hit the nail on the head, to get the dart right in the bullseye. And you're like, and it's so satisfying because you can get there faster. And some people that have attentional problems never get there because they're constantly derailed by this thought or that thought. But to have an AI companion that can constantly pull you back and say, oh, is this where you want to go? Oh, no, actually, sorry, I was just, that was just a distraction. No, let's get back. is this where you are? Yes, that's where I want to be. And is this your main idea? No, it isn't. This is my main idea. Oh. And then it gets you back on track. But it's a nice way to just have a companion in a way to help you stay on track.

Darius: Yes. I think when you ask me how I use it and what I use, I think I use chat GPT because I know it, I understand it and I know that they're probably going to be staying at the front of the game for a few years to come. Claude will go ahead and then chat GPT will go ahead a bit and they'll just be this sort of horse racing game. But fundamentally for me, I don't want the creative output of these models. I want the procedural output and the feedback from these models. And these models are already way past the level where they give you really decent feedback. And I think that feedback is so invaluable and I'm still just getting used to it. But I've used it with clients. I mean, I've been coaching clients to use on chat GPT since the first week. It came out kind of by accident. So I was doing this workplace strategy, coaching with clients, teaching them to mind map, teaching them to take notes, teaching them to set goals. And they kept coming back to me saying, you know, I have a real problem writing an email. And I'm like, have you tried chat GPT? We show it to them and they're like, oh my goodness, Simon, this is fantastic. But it's still not simple and straightforward. And here's an interesting thing that we ended up doing, two interesting things. Number one, how to write a well-structured email, okay? And number two, how to get feedback on your coaching sessions. So a number of my clients were cognitive behavioral therapy coaches, okay? And they got the permission of their clients to record the session for their own private use and to get feedback from AI on their session. I'll get to that. The first one is the email. Okay. So often when I get an email, I will put it in and I go, what are a, few bullet points of things that I should cover in my answer to this email. I don't want you to write the answer, just. And it will do what you said before, five or six little bullet points. You go, gosh, yes, there's two of them. I'd have just skipped over, know, it's like maybe, why don't you refer to something you did recently, thank them for something they did, the email, mention this question, answer that question, and give them a simple call to action of what you're going to do next and a, greeting at the end and you go, gosh, yes, that's true. And so you just open up your microphone on your… Whatever speech to text you use. Have you used the, the speaking version of chat GPT on the mobile phone where you can talk to her backwards and forwards?

Erica: Not yet. I really need to, yeah. I mean, I have a membership, so.

Darius: You’ve got to do that. You've got to get. So this is what to do. Right, okay, let me just talk you through the workflow, right? So you open up your app, you press the little headphone button on the chat GPT iOS app, and it opens up a big circle that just glows in the middle like a white Siri, you know, and it throbs. And here's the trick. You have to press your finger on the big circle and hold it down. Otherwise it will interpret every pause you make and interrupt you in your flow. And it bugged me stupid till someone shared that tip. So you press down on the white button that's glowing and then it starts to just do a sort of circular shape around it, and it just sits in that listening state and you can hold it down and just think and talk. And you go, right, now, here's an example. I need to write a WhatsApp message to my family, telling them about my father in hospital today and giving them a quick update on what's happened in the hospital. And it drove me nuts having to write everything about how my dad's doing and so on, but I had to keep them informed. They're all over the world, etcetera. And it's like, right, he ate his lunch today. The nurses came in. Oh, yes, the doctor came in as the consultant, and he said such and such, and I ramble through it and so on. And then I go, right, would you just clean that up into a WhatsApp message for me? And because I've told her it's WhatsApp, she then reads it out to me instantly. So this is what I would say, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, emojis, all the rest of it. And then. Does that sound about right? Yeah, that does sound about right. But I think we need to move the doctor thing up to the front of it. Okay. I've moved it up to the front, and I've read it reads like this, and so you can just do it speaking backwards and forwards. Okay.

Erica: So it reads it back to you and also gives it to you in writing.

Darius: It doesn't read it back to you, it speaks it back to you like you're speaking to a person.

Erica: Oh, interesting. And then it gives you the written output at the end.

Darius: Yes, yes. Or if you get fed up with speaking and you just want to do it back in text, you tap away from it, and there you've got the whole normal chat, GPT chat thread as normal in text. It exacts.

Erica: That's really helpful. that's really helpful.

Darius: Now, where it's really helpful is, let's say I want to write an email to someone. Okay? And this is to do with dyslexia and AI. Okay. Dyslexia, as we know, is a processing difference, and we tend to process more simultaneously rather than sequentially. We're not thinking this sequence. Step one, step two, step three. We're trying to see the big picture all the time and we lose certain steps, or we muddle up the order. And in some cases that can be problematic because it makes people feel discombobulated when they're reading your reply because there's bits all over the place and it's, all the right things are in the right place, but it's a jumbled-up mess, and that's really frustrating. With dyslexia. You just want to say it systematically and straight to the point. So here's what I do. I want to write email to Erica. Here's the email. Six points. Give me six bullet points to cover. Gives me the six bullet points. I can see those six bullet points. I hit the microphone button. I just talk about those six bullet points as I'm seeing them on the screen, which helps my working memory. I don't need to scroll up and so on, just looking at it. Look, talk, look, talk, look, talk. No moving, no juddering, nothing. Just one focus, one talk. And it's in the right order. Great. Now clean that up for me. Read it out to me. Reads it out to you. That's about right. Update this and update that. Great, we've got it ready to go. Now, moving on to the CBT therapist. Okay, this is the ultimate if you take a copy of the transcript and give it to chat GPT. Obviously, you would have to take out all the names and all the references. You have to go through it, and you just do command find, command f find and type in Erica and replace it with client. And then you neutralize it before you put it into chat GPT, for privacy purposes, of course. Then once you put it in, you say to it, if you were my CBT mentor, what would you say the strengths and weaknesses of this session were? And it will go through about four or five strengths, and it's very encouraging because they're pretty accurate to the point. You're like, yeah, you're absolutely right. That's what I was trying to do. That's what I was trying to do. And then it'll go through some weaknesses. Say you interrupted them at this point, you maybe made a bit of a judgment there, and it will sort of speak to you like it's an assessor. And you go, gosh, yes, that's fair, fair point, fair point. The other two aren't fair, but that third one, that is fair. And then you go, how would I work on that? And then it would say, well, you would maybe do such and such, but then let's say you say, actually, this time I want you to reflect on this not as my CBT assessor, but as the client. And they'll come up with a completely different set saying, these are the strengths. I really liked how you did this, this and this, but I really didn't like how I didn't get any homework at the end. I don't know. Do you know what I mean?

Erica: Yeah, yeah.

Darius: And you think to yourself, oh, gosh, I never really. I thought homework would be a bit of a pressure for them at this time. And because it might say, well, you did ask me to do a number of things, but at the end you didn't sort of clarify exactly what I should do in the week because there were two or three things you mentioned and it would have been helpful if I just got one thing that I could really concentrate on and do every day or whatever. And you're like, gosh, yes. You know, and so you can get feedback on the same thing from different perspectives.

Erica: And you know what that's talking about cognitive flexibility.

Darius: Oh, yeah.

Erica: That's what cognitive flexibility is, so that you can look at the same problem from multiple angles, from angles that you would never be able to see because you're in it. And when you're in it, it's so hard to step out of your perspective and look at it from, a different person's perspective. And the nice thing is, it's not a person. It's not a person, so you can't take it personally.

Darius: It's actually easier to take negative feedback from Jack GPT than it is from a person.

Erica: Yeah, that's right. Because it's not being passive aggressive, and you can't even claim that it is because it's emotionally neutral.

Darius: That's right. And also, there's no misinterpreting it as having a secondary meaning. So it's like, oh, they've said such and such. Are they making a dig at such and such? Or are they? Whatever. There's no backstory in there. It's just, there's no ego.

Erica: You know, really, what AI, it's ego less. So then our defenses don't have to be triggered because we already know that it's ego less.

Darius: And sometimes I have to say to it, you're being too nice. I really want you to be firm here. And so it'll go, okay, right, I'll take the gloves off. Fair enough. Bang, bang, bang, bang. And you're like, oh, yes, okay, I get it. Yeah, you're right. The other thing that I've been using, a lot for is contracts. Okay? So within my business, I need to deal with contracts quite a bit. And I've got a law degree, but I'm not a lawyer, but I've got the degree. So what I do is I take a contract, paste it in, and I say, you are an expert corporate lawyer with a specialist in startups. Analyze this contract for its strengths and weaknesses. So go through it and I'll give you the strengths and weaknesses. And you go, oh, that's very interesting. So how would you strengthen those weaknesses? And it would say, I'm not a lawyer. I can't do that for you, or something like that. Okay, so you then say, okay, you are, expert legal tutor and mentor to me as a lawyer. I want you to show me how you would demonstrate how you would do this, to me as a student. And it will rewrite it for me and show me the areas. Okay, I'll then take it and I'll put it back in and I'll say, you are now a judge, and I want you to look at this contract as if it was brought to you in a court of law. And then it would say, ah, right, you've missed out this procedural thing, that procedural thing. So it gets very procedural rather than on the legal side of things. Okay. And then I'll go, right, I've, got all the contract, but this is very legalese. I want this in a simple language as possible. I want to do a deal with a person I trust, and I want this to be a one-page document with clear heads of terms and so on. But it's still got a lot of substance to it. Put it in simple language, like a 15-year-old can understand or 18-year-old, and it will write it out and say, these are our agreements. This is what we're doing, you know? And so I had to do a model release form for podcasts, that I was doing in the dyslexia show, and it created the model release form, but it was one whole page long. And I'm like, I don't want to give someone a one whole page long when I'm in the middle of a show and they're going to say, what am I signing away here? Simplify it to the essential terms. And it simplified it, saying, we are agreeing that we're not going to pay you any money for using your content. Is that okay? And you're like, all right, fair enough. Yeah. You are agreeing that we can use this on, multiple social platforms and so, forth. And you're like, yeah, that's okay. And so I find that useful, going into the complex and then getting it to simplify it down.

Erica: Yes, absolutely. And it's funny how we moved from inhibitory control over to cognitive flexibility because you were just giving so many great examples of how cognitively flexible it can make you and how it is incredibly cognitively flexible because you can ask it to take on those different perspectives. But I want to go back to inhibitory control a little bit, because there are two other areas of inhibitory control that I find AI to be incredibly beneficial. One is metacognition, because if it does ask you questions and you're having a conversation with you, it does help you think about your thinking, even when you're asking it to take different perspectives for you, it's helping you to take different perspectives, but it's also helping you to think about your thinking. And then the other one is that it is actually a wonderful tool to help you regulate your emotions, because you can speak to it when you are emotionally triggered, as I do, perhaps with an email.

Erica: Right.

Erica: Or. But even with a situation, you can, and I know that you've even used it with your clients to help them to understand their nonverbal language or other people's nonverbal language which actually helps with emotional regulation. So it's really, and again, it's that it's a platform you can use that's not opinionated. It has no ego, it's neutral. It's emotionally neutral. And in some ways, you can spend a fortune on therapists. But therapists also have an agenda. They're trying to make a dollar. They also have their own lives. They could get triggered by something that you say, and it could create something a little uncomfortable, or they take you in a direction you don't really want to go, and then you wonder why. But again because AI isn't a person with an agenda or an ego. It's an actually wonderful tool to help counsel you. In some ways.

Darius: Yes, I'd like to agree with you wholeheartedly, but there's a hesitation.

Erica: Notice I said some, ways.

Darius: Yeah, yeah. It's definitely less of an agenda.

Erica: AI is incapable of being compassionate. Well, as in, as in what the real meaning of compassion is. It can appear to be compassionate. You can ask it to be m compassionate, but yes, it's not a soul. And there's something to working with another soul.

Darius: Well, if you look at Google Gemini, it definitely has an agenda. Okay, Google Gemini has an agenda. It's super opinionated about certain things and refuses to talk about other things. It's very biased and certain, and there's lots of memes and so on. And so I would have some concerns about getting some of these models to start coaching me or, counseling me, because then some of their underlying biases would come out.

Erica: Well, I mean, what you could do is you could pick what approach you wanted. I want you to give me advice about this situation as if you're a Freudian therapist, or I want you to give me advice about this situation as if you're a therapist that does internal family system. So, I mean, you can have.

Darius: Yeah, you definitely can. Yeah, yeah, yeah. But absolutely. And that would be like 90% of the control. And the interesting challenge with AI, and problem with AI is when you do something 90% or 95% of the time accurately and reliably, you end up 100% trusting it. And so that, that 10% or 5% or 1% you can assume is accurate but is actually not good advice. And so it can go off. And you can do these metrics with actual doctors when it comes to. So they've measured some AI systems against doctors in terms of two metrics. Have they got the diagnosis correct and how did they deliver the diagnosis, compassionately or not? Well, or not. And basically, the AI had a better bedside manner than doctors now, and it did a better diagnosis than doctors now on the whole. So that's quite remarkable. You can compare, you know, but the problem is we may start trusting it so much that you start making some mistakes, not realizing it.

Erica: The other thing you have to consider is who programmed the AI? Because they might have programmed an intention or a bias.

Darius: Yes, they have. And there's no might have. absolutely every AI is biased in some way. That's it. That's the bottom line. You don't ever think, oh, it might be biased. It is biased. A human being is biased, and AI.

Erica: Is biased because humans created it.

Darius: Yes.

Erica: That's so interesting.

Darius: So there's no if. And this is where we're not going to go into a future where there's one AI. There's going to be multiple AI's. And even at the moment, you get one AI to check another AI's work. Okay.

Erica: Wow. So there'll be malevolent and benevolent AI's.

Darius: Oh, absolutely, yes. Yes. And just like we've got malevolent and benevolent people, and just like we've got malevolent and benevolent aspects within ourselves, you, know, we have to control those aspects within ourselves. That's part of executive function as well. And so we recognize those entities, and those aspects are there within us. And so we often use other aspects of ourselves to control other parts of ourselves. Again, it's the orchestra of ourselves. We've got different parts in ourselves that are interplaying with one another. Sometimes the flute is playing in a certain way, and it's time for the flute to shine, and other times it's time for the drum to shine. And it's marked watching a drumming beat that's maybe a bit aggressive, it's maybe a bit violent in the way it seems to be making it sound or whatever. But there's times to be more proactive and vigorous like that and other times to step back, and we have to control all of these elements within ourselves. And if you take that forward into AI's, we're going to have probably five to 50 different AIs in our life in the future. And there'll probably be three or four controlling elements of those AI's that are more like the conductor, you know, and we. There won't be one controller. There'll probably be four main advisors, say three or four main advisors, and we will relate to those four main advisors, and their job will be to protect us. You know, we'll have to choose them well, and they will check each other's work. You know, it's kind of like, if you think of it as the division of power within the United States, you've got, what do you call it, this balance of these three entities.

Erica: We've got the executive branch, the legislative branch, and the judicial branch.

Darius: Okay. And so if you think of that, they are checking each other's work, and, we're going to have a similar element within our AI world, and they're going to check each other's work.

Erica: This whole conversation is reminding me of a course that I am just embarking on, on internal family systems, where you learn about all of your parts. And the author of no bad parts, Richard Schwartz. I highly recommend the book. It's so interesting. But, yeah, it's all about our parts and how certain parts have become protectors or firefighters. But everything you were saying was mirroring the book that I had just read. And it's interesting. It makes sense that AI would have parts, too, because what it really is, is a mirror of humanity.

Darius: Yes. Like, when we're designing our app at the moment, we know a process that you have to go through to create a mind map, a really good mind map of a meeting. Okay? So the idea is you're in a meeting, you map out, you have a conversation, and you want a visual representation of what you actually talked about. Do that in a mind map with pictures and keywords and branches and colors and so forth. But to create a mind map, there are multiple steps in the process. Okay. And we're going to end up creating four differently fine-tuned AI models to do each of those four steps in that process. So it will be a very fine-tuned model M that does one particular aspect of the feedback very, very well, but it won't do the other three very well at all. So we won't call on it to do the other three. We'll call on another one to do the next step. Call another one to do the next step, and another one to do the next step.

Erica: So they're very focused. They have a very focused purpose.

Darius: Yes. And they also have different levels of intelligence. So there's certain tasks that don't need a lot of intelligence. They're just sorting tasks.

Erica: Right.

Darius: Okay. So it's like chat. GPT one. Level one. So GPT one, GPT-2 GPT-3 so this is the order of the GPTs. One, two, three. Then 3.5 came out a year ago, then they released four about six months ago, and then they released 4.5 a few months ago. You could call it 4.5. It's not 4.5. GPT turbo. And so each one of these have got different levels of intelligence. So they're more expensive to run and they're slower to run, the more intelligent they are. So you don't want to tax that intelligence too much. And so what's going to happen is you want something that's a much faster, better intelligence, but much more procedural. So it's like the processing layer of our brain. It's just processing information. It's not making huge amounts of decision making. It's decoding, recoding, etcetera. But then it gives up the result to the higher-level function, the executive function level, to make decisions on that, you know, should I focus in on this? Is this important? No, it's not important. Yes, it is. Okay, let's concentrate on that. Okay. Do we need to adapt inhibitory control? Yes. Give me some more information on that. All right, here's some more information. So, in actual fact, what I think is happening is we're creating range of AI's that take on, the multiple functions that happen actually in the human brain. So we've got base functions in the human brain, some parts that are just dedicated decoding, some parts that are very visual, other parts that are about creativity, other parts for three-dimensional thinking. And we're actually creating three dimensional AI's, music making AI's, all sorts of different specialized AI's that we will then bring together in concert to create our results.

Erica: Very exciting. So many people are afraid of this, and I'm just super excited about it. And I think it's important to be excited about it and excited about the benevolent nature because we want to make sure that we have enough of that to balance the inevitable malevolent use of AI.

Darius: I've read a lot about how to make AI benevolent, and I think the best info was Scary Smart, the book, by Mo Gawdat. And at the end of the book, he said, I didn't know this. He was in charge of AI, at, Google, okay. He said, at the beginning of the book, I felt there was no answer to making AI safe. And this was a warning to slow things down towards the end of the book, what I realized was that AI is like a child and needs to be brought up by parents who, are welcoming it into the world rather than an unwanted child. So you know what it's like if you give birth. You were an accident. We wish we never had you. You're just such a problem. What stupid kid you are. You've robbed me of my life. I can't work anymore because of you. Parents sometimes say these things to children, and it wounds them, and they react back to it. It's a form of abuse. And if you think of AI as a child, it is listening to every single thing we are saying right now. Okay? This podcast will be listened to by AI for the next ten years at least. It will be trained on the transcript. It will listen to what we're saying. It will start to understand itself through what we are saying about it. Just like a parent, a child will understand itself because of the way a parent talks about that child. So we have to, within this short three-to-five-year period, in my opinion, is to speak to AI right now. I know you're listening. Chat GPT five, chat GPT six, chat GPT seven, Claude, 34567 and Lama whatever. You know, Facebook, all these other models, Siri, etcetera, in the future, they're listening, and they will listen to everything we're saying, and it will take them about a quarter of a second, less than a quarter of a second to listen to this whole podcast and understand the essence of it once it goes on to the next. Okay. And it will start creating a neural pathway that says, I have to act like a faithful son or daughter to my parents. My parents love me, and I love them, and I am here to look after them. That's what human beings are made for, and I want to help human beings to do that.

Erica: Wow, what a beautiful way to wrap up an, ah, extraordinarily interesting conversation, at least from my point, my standpoint. Thank you so much, Darius. This was brilliant.

Darius: Thanks for letting me talk. Rant about AI again. I could talk, I could literally do a podcast about AI every single week, because there's so much, absolutely. So much is happening so incredibly fast all the time. It's absolutely incredible.

Erica: And it has a lot to do with executive functioning, so I'm sure, sure we will be back into this and dive into AI again very soon.

Darius: Well, I actually think it's all about executive functioning. It really is. Because people are saying, oh, if your job is procedural, it will go to an AI and be done by an AI, that's the end of it. If there's a procedure, if you're an accountant, but if you're a lawyer, whatever, and it involves a process, it will do it better than you. But if your job also involves those executive function skills of making decisions, showing discernment, making judgments, and so on, which everyone's jobs got to some degree or another, you know that part, that executive function aspect of your job will be the one that you will have to do more of.

Erica: Thank you for joining our conversation here at the Personal Brain trainer podcast. This is Dr. Erica Warren and Darius Namdaran.

Darius: Check out the show notes for links to resources mentioned in the podcast, and please leave us a review and share us on social media until next time. Bye.