- A Wharton professor ran an experiment to test how much AI tools could accomplish in just 30 minutes.
- Ethan Mollick tasked ChatGPT and the new Bing with working on a business project.
How much can AI do in half an hour? One professor recently found out.
Ethan Mollick, an associate professor of management at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, put AI tools, including OpenAI’s ChatGPT and Microsoft’s new Bing, to work on a business project in an experiment he documented on his Substack. The task specifically was to market the launch of an educational game.
“What it accomplished was superhuman,” he wrote in his post. In 30 minutes it: did market research, created a positioning document, wrote an email campaign, created a website, created a logo and ‘hero shot’ graphic, made a social media campaign for multiple platforms, and scripted and created a video.”
First, Mollick asked Bing to look up the educational game in question to teach itself about the product. He then told Bing to create an email marketing campaign to promote the game. In just 2 minutes and 40 seconds, Bing spat out 4 emails totaling 1,757 words and 7 pages, which Mollick writes were “all correct” and “pretty good.” Bing also wrote a social media campaign when prompted, including posts for Facebook and Twitter.
To build a website for the game, Mollick turned to ChatGPT, which produced HTML code for a launch announcement page, though he notes GPT-4 (ChatGPT’s latest iteration) “ran very slowly” on this task, so it went a few minutes past the half-hour limit.
“I am sure humans could have done better, but they could not have been as fast,” Mollick wrote of his experiment. “And that, I think, is both the problem and the opportunity.”
Mollick has compared Bing and ChatGPT before. Last month, he tasked both with writing a 1,000-word essay on tasked both with writing a 1,000-word essay on “how innovations are adopted in a specific industry or organization of your choice” and decided Bing produced “much higher quality” responses.
Mollick made headlines earlier this year for requiring that his students use ChatGPT, while many schools and colleges ban such AI tools, citing concerns that they’ll facilitate plagiarism.