Imagine a world without Velcro. It was never invented, no one in the world has had the concept, nothing.

Apart from a major hole in the discography of ZZ Top, most of the world is pretty much the same in 2023.

Donald Trump, Covid, and chatGPT are all here. There are of course small differences. Small children are less easy to get into shoes, and car seat covers have inconvenient zips, but otherwise all is the same.

Now, start a session with chatGPT and start prompting it to think (sic) of a new way of joining fabric temporarily.

It will never, ever, come up with Velcro. If a concept does not exist on the Internet, or the corpus of training material, LLM’s will not invent it. This is the difference between human intelligence and LLM’s, they can endlessly riff on combinations of existing content, and, indeed, produce some remarkable results, but true invention is beyond them. Velcro, General Relativity, and Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, all were genuinely new inventions, current AI cannot do this.

The Turing Test of sounding like a plausible human has been pretty much achieved, (if the only people you talk to are Management Consultants), but AI has yet to pass the Velcro Test of true creativity.

It may be well to remember this when AI fanboi’s and doomsters attempt to inculcate you with their prognostications.