Chat GPT and ideation

My first experience with ChatGPT started simple enough. I gamemaster a few RPGs (Role Playing Games) for my friends, and have been running a continuous monthly Star Wars game for 7 years. I’d seen a few conversations start cropping up in forums about using AI to generate sessions and bad guys to throw at your party and see how they’d respond. 

As is typical, there were some who were only too enthusiastic and ready to turn over their GM screen and become a player, and others who were only doom and gloom about the end of creativity in gaming. 

I fell somewhere in between. But the door was open.

A few weeks later, I had the chance to test ChatGPT. It was Friday night, my game was in less than an hour, and I was drawing a blank pulling from all my standard tropes for the night’s session. 

ChatGPT proceeded to give me paragraphs of text outlining a setting, an objective, a triggering event, some challenges or limitations that might come up mid-play, and a conclusion. 

Now, I can’t remember how much of this I changed for the actual session we played that night. But it was at that moment that I started to see what ChatGPT’s value proposition was: It wasn’t in replacing me as GM, it was in augmenting me and helping me refine my thoughts. 

Flash forward to February 2024: I’ve been having regular conversations with ChatGPT now, and recently upgraded to the paid 4.0 version with a monthly subscription. The app is on the main page of my phone now, and I will regularly pick its brain on anything ranging from writing song lyrics, to generating unique quirks for my Big Bad Evil Guys (BBEG in RPG circles), to marketing at the firm. 

As with most responses, results are wordy and a bit clunky (the uncanny valley still at play). But I appreciate seeing how AI thought through the query, and I have learned that ChatGPT considers some things I might miss. I want to illustrate an example now, so you can see into the conversational nature of the program, and how answers can be drilled down into. 

I’m currently in the process of launching a video podcast for our target market, and wanted something more catchy than “GW Videocast.” 

OK, interesting. ChatGPT sure loves alliteration…

One of the best uses of ChatGPT is volume. It can produce hundreds of ideas in less than a minute. Some are good, some are terrible, and it doesn’t hesitate to offer both. It also won’t stop as soon as it finds one that is good enough, like I might.

I go back to its second idea: Succession Success Stories. I don’t know why it has never dawned on me till now that “Success” and “Succession” have the same root. 

OK… I’m starting to come up with something. 

Ok. It comes up with some of the same positives I’d felt about “Success in Succession.” 

But, yeah, I didn’t consider the name’s lack of uniqueness or emotional appeal. It is kind of ambiguous. 

I’m still hung up on the alliteration, but want it to be more active. Success is something we do, successful succession isn’t automatic. It’s hard work to keep a business together that at one point was solely based on the grit of its founder. 

No…dead end there. Thank you for highlighting how ridiculous they both sound. I didn’t catch it, till the AI said it back to me. 

So I go back to an earlier response.

Terrible phrasing, but I like that “The Art of…” Whether it’s a clear rip off or just an homage to one of my earliest favorite blogs, The Art of Manliness, I like its suggestion of a “nuanced and thoughtful exploration of the topic.” That also should be there, alongside the hard work. We didn’t just buy a business to keep doing things the way the previous generation did. 

Creative and catchy? Why, thank you! I do appreciate how ChatGPT compliments me. I find myself doing the same, and thanking it (often!). That conversational nature is part of what makes it so enjoyable to use. 

Good point about the pronunciation though. I always get stuck on that with my ideas, thinking I’m more clever than I am and that everyone else is in on my dad jokes. Like Tom Hanks changing the One-ders to the Wonders right before they hit it big, ChatGPT simultaneously says “No, I get it. Cute. But terrible.”

Zeroing in. Different enough, but not so much to cause a pronunciation issue. 

Yeah. That’s it. But now to add some clarity, so people know what we are at first glance. 

Throw it into Canva, along with my first guest and our brand colors, and I also now have a rough thumbnail idea for the channel

Now, nearly two months after this initial conversation, I can still return to this thread and add some questions related to the podcast. And the GPT remembers the context, the decisions we’ve made before, and the tone I’m going for. 

This, to me, is AI’s biggest selling point. It isn’t the first page of search results that provides the gold, it’s the questions we use to search within the search results. And as long as that conversation occurs in the same thread, it remembers where we’ve left off and is ready for me to add to, whenever the inspiration or idea strikes. 

AI is not yet at the point where it could replace me as a podcaster. But AI + the humanity I bring to the conversation – my intuition, empathy, and hunches of what my target market wants – only helps me become a better Barrett.

This post stemmed from a recent conversation in our community. If you’re interested in growing your firm with other like-minded entrepreneurial firm owners, apply for membership today or reach out to [email protected] to learn more!

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