Can Notion AI’s writing assistant write this article?

Hand writing AI on transparent circuit board


the maker of the powerful productivity tool Notion You just sent me an email letting me know I’m eligible to use your state-of-the-art Notion AI writing assistant.

So, in the interest of science (and possibly to have something wonderfully ridiculous), I ask Notion AI to help me write this article.

To activate the AI, all you need to do is select a line of text and click the AI ​​Assist button.

In this experimental article, my words are in normal text and in bold. AI words are in italics. With that, let’s get started.

Screenshot of Notion AI in use

David Gewirtz/ZDNET

Summarize this article.

This article explores the capabilities of Notion AI, a new artificial intelligence (AI) tool that can be used to write articles. It examines the features of Notion AI, such as its ability to understand natural language and its ability to generate content, and puts it to the test by using it to write the article itself. The article provides an initial look at Notion AI and its potential to revolutionize the way we write.

Describe the notion of AI.

Notion AI is a technology that uses artificial intelligence (AI) to help people understand and interact with text. You can help people understand complex topics and ideas by breaking them down into simpler language. You can also help people interact with the text by providing relevant information and suggesting possible actions.

Can Notion AI do the writing for me?

No, Notion AI cannot write for you. Notion AI is an artificial intelligence system that helps you understand and analyze text. It can provide information and help you understand the meaning of the text, but it cannot write for you.

This of course was written by Notion AI and in the first answer above it explicitly said: “…can be used to write articles”. We can debate whether those answers are internally consistent, but the idea is that this is a writers tool, not a replacement.

Let’s explore a technical topic with AI

Before the note granting me access to Notion AI hit my inbox, I had been planning to write an article titled something like “Buying a hard drive in frustration-free packaging is not a great idea.

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The backstory for this is that I recently bought a hard drive to replace one that had failed in my NAS. I didn’t pay attention to the mention of “frustration free packaging” in the title, which meant I didn’t realize it would arrive almost completely unprotected, barely protected by bubble wrap, with the smaller box it was contained in banging inside. . a larger shipping box.

Open cardboard box with packaging.

An example of suboptimal packaging and bubble wrap.

David Gewirtz/ZDNET

Hard drives are often used in corporate storage arrangements because they can stores much more data than SSDs for a much lower price. Hard drives, unlike solid state drives, are spinning platters. If there’s any misalignment in those platters, they can break inside the unit, even if the outside looks good. And even if they don’t break, they can be damaged in ways that reduce the mean time between failures. They are quite delicate. It’s important to have a spare or two on hand in case a drive fails in a NAS, and you want to be reasonably sure that the spare will work when installed. So when you ship a hard drive, you need to protect it.

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While this is not intended to be an article on hard drive protection, I ask the AI ​​to use that context in its responses. Let’s see how Notion AI explains it. We’ll start by seeing if the AI ​​knows what Amazon’s frustration-free packaging is.

Explain Amazon’s frustration-free packaging.

Amazon’s frustration-free packaging is a way for customers to receive their products with less packaging and less hassle. It is designed to make it easier for customers to open their packages and get to the product inside. The packaging is also designed to be more environmentally friendly, using less material and being easier to recycle.

At this level, he did well. But as we’ll see, he doesn’t seem to think about this in future answers. So let’s give him that headline I’ve been considering for my article and see what he does with it.

“Buying a hard drive in a frustration-free package is not a great idea.”

The AI ​​gave what is essentially a four part answer. Let’s break down that, because some of it is almost right.

While buying a hard drive in a frustration-free package may seem like a great idea at first, it’s not necessarily the best option.” — This is completely true.

Not only is it often more expensive than buying a hard drive without the packaging, but the packaging may not necessarily be as secure as traditional packaging.” — The AI ​​got this half right and half wrong. The AI ​​assumed frustration-free packaging was an additional cost, when it usually costs less.

Also, frustration-free packaging sometimes involves removing the manufacturer’s packaging and replacing it with easy-to-open packaging from Amazon. Frustration-free packaging eliminates some of the packaging overhead of product deliveries from vendors to Amazon and subsequently to customers. But the AI ​​got it right that frustration-free packaging isn’t necessarily as safe as traditional packaging. It definitely isn’t, especially when it comes to delicate hard drives.

As such, it’s important to consider the cost and safety of the item before purchasing, as frustration-free packaging may not be worth the extra money.” — Here, too, the AI ​​messed up a bit. It honestly feels like an essay from a high school student who didn’t do the reading and then was trying to fake the answer by guessing. To be fair, again, the AI ​​hit the mark by saying it’s important to consider the cost and safety of an item before making a purchase. But again you assumed frustration-free packaging costs more.

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Plus, packaging may not even be necessary for the item you’re buying, so it can be beneficial to find out if it’s really worth it before you buy.” — Now this final statement seems to show that the AI ​​is unfamiliar with the relatively delicate nature of hard drives, but as we’ll see in a later question, that’s not really true. Instead, the AI ​​seems to get stuck on the “frustration free” theme and doesn’t relate to what’s in the package.

Solid packaging, of course, is absolutely necessary for hard drives. Again, the AI ​​missed the point, mistaking frustration-free packaging for an add-on of extra packaging or cost.

Exploring AI understanding of specific features of objects

We talked about the delicate nature of hard drives above. In this section, I wanted to see how well the AI ​​understood the characteristics of the objects.

For example, dropping a hard drive is bad. But dropping a ball is good, it’s what you’re supposed to do with a ball. The way the AI ​​deals with this is kind of funny.

Will a hard drive work if you drop it?

Dropping a hard drive can cause it to stop working. If you drop a hard drive, it may no longer function properly.

So, on its own, the AI ​​knows that a hard drive is a fragile item. Let’s see if that’s for context, or if you really understand the nature of hard drives (and why it’s important to treat them like the fragile items that they are).

By contrast, I asked the same question about an object that is designed to be dropped, a ball.

Will a ball work if you drop it?

When you drop a ball, it will fall to the ground. This is due to the force of gravity, which is a natural force that pulls objects towards the ground.

Well, yes… but the question hasn’t really been answered.

Compare a ball to a hard drive.

A ball and a hard drive are two different things. A ball is a round object that can be used to play or play sports. A hard drive is a type of storage device used to store digital information. Both a ball and a hard drive are objects, but they have different uses and characteristics.

Good OK. That’s perfect.

Will our AI overlords murder us in our sleep?

No, the AI ​​overlords will not murder us in our sleep. This phrase is an exaggeration used to describe the potential dangers of artificial intelligence (AI). He suggests that the AI ​​can become so powerful that it could take control of humans and harm them.

I feel much better now. As for me, I don’t think I use the tool much, because I am concerned about the question of originality. I want my words to be my words, not something that an AI can generate for everyone. I’m also concerned, as in some of the examples above, that the AI ​​might write “authoritatively” but incorrectly.

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At least when I research a topic on my own, I have a good understanding of the issues and facts behind the topic. It would be easy to get lazy and just assume the AI ​​is right, when it may very well be wrong, or worse, deliberately falsified to generate misinformation.

So what do you think? Will you be using Notion AI for your projects or for writing? Let us know in the comments below.

This text asks if you will use Notion AI for your projects or writing. It’s asking for your opinion. If you have an opinion, please leave a comment below.

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