What do you get when you mix ChatGPT, Classical Latin and Associative Thinking ?

Source Wikicommons: Marie Antoinette’s execution in 1793

ChatGPT is making headlines, positive and negative on a daily basis. And it has spurred some thinking on my end. Don’t know what ChatGPT is? Well, it is an A.I, an Artificial Intelligence, that is based on what researchers call a Large Language Model that is trained in “Natural Language Understanding”. This computer model has recently been packaged into a chatbot interface, a computer program that regular people, like you and I, can use to conduct human-like conversation on a very broad variety of topics. It might be helpful to think about this as an Apple Siri or Amazon Alexa, on steroids , even better a good cocktail of nootropics. and a pinch of your favorite prescription amphetamine. Jokes aside, you can type in prompt and the system understands human languages, and responds back accordingly.

Don’t believe me? I prompted the system with the following:

ChatGPT — “Please, can you draw a short vignette that describes ChatGPT in classical Latin” .

Humbly it responded about its limitation that it could only reply as next and not draw in real-time, but still did an amazing job responding in an acceptable, yet synthetic answer in Classical Latin almost immediately. If you give an illustrator this short paragraph, I am sure they can create a graphical rendition that could make it way into a short comic strip. Better yet, if you give a specialized generative A.I. that takes in text and draws a set of pictures, I am sure that we could be seeing the computer generated vignette that I initially asked for. I would not be surprised if something this powerful already existed in in a lab somewhere. Quae Fututiones !

As the quality of Latin, well I am sure that it bends the rules, and the ancient inhabitants of Rome would have marked ChatGPT as a non-native speaker.

And for the reader’s convenience, I asked the A.I. to provide me with a translation of what it just written in Latin.



Michael "Mick" Bisignani

Professional Technologist, Aspiring Food Celebrity. Catholic spreading messages of Empathy and Equality.