Last week, when it was unseasonably warm and clear in the early evening, there appeared in the low sky a string of lights, moving slowly across the horizon and disappearing. Very few people around Otsego County actually saw this, as by habit very few people wander outside and gaze upward at this time of year. There was no record of this phenomenon in the newspapers or on social media; it was as though nothing had happened to disturb the slow, forward-creeping days and hours as we march on toward the onslaught of the more gentle months.
So, what was that beautiful arching line of light? The parade was, in fact, a satellite train—a bunch of satellites in this case, but not in every case—51 in all— that had been launched off the coast of California to enter space and eventually dissipate into individual satellites once they entered their correct Federal Communications Commission-approved orbits.
Last November OpenAI, a not-so-big (albeit associated, through a $1 billion investment, with Microsoft and co-founded, in 2015, by Elon Musk), artificial intelligence lab in San Francisco, introduced a newly developed chatbot—ChatGPT—that has made impressive inroads into our understanding of the challenges of artificial intelligence. The company first coded a chatbot in 2020, GPT-3, which is one of the first AI tools that responds to prompts in viable human-like text, for the most part both grammatically and, it is hoped but not confirmed, factually, correct.
The Otsego County Chamber of Commerce hosted a Zoom town hall Tuesday, July 27, to discuss workforce needs for small businesses.
The participants included Congressman Antonio Delgado, D-19, State Sen. Peter Oberacker, R-Maryland, Assemblyman John Salka, R-Brookfield, Assemblyman Brian Miller, R-New Hartford, and Assemblyman Chris Tague, R-Schoharie.
The overall sentiments of the Zoom call echoed the reality of a huge problem with understaffing and the difficulties hiring employees in Otsego County.
Business owners spoke of restaurants being unable to service customers due to staff shortages and some businesses being forced to close early based on having no staff available.
Audrey Benkenstein, from Opportunities for Otsego, spoke about how many of her organization’s positions required advanced degrees and training, which made finding employees very difficult.
“We serve a vulnerable population and without staffing our programs suffer,” Benkenstein said. She said there were also lack of transportation options, lack of internet issues and lack of day care assistance available.