23rd June 2023

Prof. Huseyin Atakan Varol Inspires Nazarbayev University Community with Talk on Language Vision Models and AI Implications for Education

Prof. Huseyin Atakan Varol, founding director of the Institute of Smart Systems and Artificial Intelligence at Nazarbayev University (ISSAI NU), delivered a captivating talk titled “Recent Advances in Language Vision Models, Related Research at ISSAI, and Speculative Implications for Teaching” to the NU community. The talk was organized by the Innovative Learning Hub of NU.

The audience was initially introduced to the diverse research projects undertaken by ISSAI NU, with a particular focus on AI language models for the Kazakh language and AI applications for individuals with special needs. 

Continuing the talk, Prof. Varol delved into the cutting-edge field of artificial intelligence, with a specific emphasis on large language models. He highlighted ChatGPT as a prime example of a general-purpose technology that provides insights into the realm of artificial general intelligence (AGI). Prof. Varol provided an overview of how models like ChatGPT function, shedding light on their ability to process and generate human-like text.

Despite acknowledging the remarkable capabilities of ChatGPT, Prof. Varol also addressed its limitations. He acknowledged that ChatGPT performs exceptionally well with popular languages such as English but faces challenges with lower-resource languages.

The latter part of the talk centred on the potential implications of AI technologies, such as ChatGPT, on education, teaching, and research. Prof. Varol engaged the audience in a thought-provoking discussion, raising questions about the integration of AI in educational settings. 

Prof. Varol’s talk left the NU community inspired and eager to explore the possibilities that AI technologies, particularly large language models, present for education and research. Professor’s talk serves as a testament to the transformative power of artificial intelligence in shaping the future of learning and knowledge acquisition at Nazarbayev University and beyond.

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