Hans van Dam, founder of Conversation Design Institute delivers world’s first ChatGPT generated TED Talk

CDI’s founder and chatbot expert Hans van Dam has delivered the world’s first TED Talk written by ChatGPT, the Large Language Model (LLM) created by OpenAI. The speech entitled “What happens when AI writes a TED Talk” was the first of its kind, lasting around 10 minutes and delivered to an audience in Alkmaar, North Holland.


Hans was invited to deliver his talk about pushing the boundaries of artificial intelligence because through his work he has a bird’s eye view of the market and how the technology is developing. He probed the relationship between language, AI, and human perception, drawing from personal experiences and his knowledge of language's impact on individuals and their understanding of reality. He also highlighted the importance of language in self-expression, knowledge acquisition, and belief formation.

In the last five minutes of the talk Hans confirmed to his audience how ChatGPT wrote ‘most’ of his talk, but clarified that he had to come up with different ideas and use ChatGPT to brainstorm – creating different outlines and a number of drafts.

The LLM also helped Hans to explain concepts like ‘spiral dynamics’ in a simple way, as well as generating the cartoons used in the presentation backdrop.

Hans explained: “I was really impressed with how good it was, but it took me, a human to give it the right encouragement, so my prompts would result in something that I could use. I took that and curated it, and I designed it and polished it up to turn it into a coherent story.”

He went on to point out that in what he undertook, there are still two clear roles for humans: a prompt engineer and a conversation designer which he also highlighted may not be ‘roles’ – but may come to be defined as ‘future skills’. He also proposed that for humanity to flourish, it's important that people with soft skills are trained in prompt engineering and conversation design, so that we elevate humanity rather than destroy it.

Hans concluded: “Ten, 50 or even 500 years from now, when AI systems have far surpassed human intelligence and nobody knows how any of these systems work anymore, we can be sure that if we introduce human guidance today, we will at least know that it was created with the right intention to help folks like you and me, and everybody living on this earth.”

If you would like to find out more about how LLMs such as ChatGPT are changing the way chatbots are developed contact the team at CDI to find out more about how we can help you and your business.

Our Prompt Designer for Conversational AI Course will teach you how ChatGPT can be used to maximise the performance of chatbots and IVR systems to create delightful conversational experiences.