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The right way to use AI in your product

The right way to use AI in your product

Nowadays, it is impossible to open the Internet and not see a “all new, all AI product, or even worse, a “your old product, now with AI”. We get it, with AI everything is faster and easier. Anyone can start a business even without knowing the core of that sector or the audience.

Dinosaur Age or the Early Life Forms

But let me tell you how it really works. In the old days, there was the stereotype. Young people in a garage with a computer created an amazing digital product. Sold it to the world in floppy disks/CD/DVD and moved to a bigger building. With the internet it didn’t get much different, only faster. You could launch a product and – if you were lucky – become viral for free. Or investment funds would help you scale from a local to a global market. Big companies would swallow small companies and that was it. Those were the easy days.

The Meteorite or the End of Days for Primitive Forms

Then the dot com bubble exploded, and it all changed. One would assume companies have gone wiser, but it looked the opposite. The Web evolved to what is called 2.0 with a spike in user generated content, blogs, social media, video platforms… You name it and people were doing it. That also meant the internet was becoming mainstream and anyone (unfortunately) could use to create a business. And although many good people created worthy businesses, two phenomena occurred. One, good people with good intentions created bad businesses. Business fail, we know, but online businesses grow too much too soon and when they collapse, there are many more people affected. And two, bad people pretended to create legitimate businesses to trick innocent people to give away many. And oddly enough, a new concept was created.

From the Cradle of Life to the Minimum Viable Product

For me, landing page was for “landing”, where we received the sailors (or internet surfers). Comparing with a physical store, if the online ads are the flyers you hand out on the street, landing pages are the street window, what you use to convince them to get inside. And once they get in, you make the sale.

Nowadays there is a market trend that feels a lot like a scam. The landing page is there, but there is nothing more. They just want you test your appetite for a would-be store. Some are honest and just ask for your email to inform you when they will open a real thing. Others accept your order (and money) even before they have a production line.

Then a solution appeared! No/low-code platforms allowed people with little technical knowledge to create sites and mobile apps in little time. Going from a mockup to a working prototype in days and being able to show a real digital thing to the world. The internet was truly opening the doors to everyone, and anyone could be a digital entrepreneur.

But one day…

A thing called AI that was lurking in sci-fi for a century, came out to say “hello world”. In a matter of months everyone wanted to test it, to play with it, and to make money with it. How? By creating (or pretending to have created) something disruptive that you must have now.

So now, you still have the “tech wizards” in a garage, jamming code for fun. And you have the “technically inclined” hacking away with low-code. And also a person writing a sentence to the computer, pretending to have the final answer to make you a millionaire, end hunger and cure all diseases.

Of course AI is useful. And it can save time to all of us. The only detail people seem to have forgotten is, it hallucinates. Would you trust the management of your newly created business to someone high on drugs? Or let them talk alone with all your customers? Or even receive payments? That is what you are doing with AI. And if you don’t know the business, more likely it is it will trick you. And guess what. AI doesn’t have to come out and apologize. Remember that sentence “Software is what we insult. Hardware what we kick”? People may insult AI, but the face that will be punched? That one is all yours.

How to reach Golden Age?

Imagine you are doing your groundbreaking software in a garage. A couple of years studying the market, the tech stacks, developing it to be like nothing before and suddenly, when you are days away from launch, someone announces they have that same product made with AI. Should you lose sleep? Not at all. Because your product is there and is real. You can always add AI to it, but your competitors, removing AI, will have nothing. It is the same we heard about social media. You can have social media. You should be on social media. But your business can’t rely on social media. You need to make sales on your own site. And you must invest in SEO. But people must remember your name, not some search engine to find you. The Internet has been here for thirty years now, and it is still just beginning. But this lesson remains the same. “You can go there, but don’t place all your eggs on the same basket.”

Conclusion

AI will do some of your work. AI may do most of your work. AI can be the tie-breaker or bring a fresh perspective on your daily decisions. But AI can’t be left alone. It needs supervision. Someone that understands the humans and the business. Than can identity a pile of bullshit in time. And that is valid for both the C-level AI, to the code-typing monkey AI, to the chatbot. A self-driving car is perfect when all cars are self driving. While there are humans in the process, the AI will always need to hold an adult’s hand.

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