Tech
Artificial Intelligence

What is Auto-GPT and why are hustle bros hype for it?

Faster and easier ways for hustle bros to promote their Substack.
By Cecily Mauran  on 
Man sleeping on a couch with his computer on the floor
Auto-GPT lets you set it, forget it, and rake in that passive income. Credit: Getty Images

If GPT-4 put hustle culture on steroids, then Auto-GPT is like those steroids taking steroids.

Auto-GPT(opens in a new tab) is the latest creation spawned from OpenAI's API that has hustle bros and get-rich-quick schemers in a tizzy. ChatGPT is already commonplace for hustle bros, who worship anything that will optimize efficiency — with the ultimate goal of making as much money as possible with the least amount of effort. And now Auto-GPT is making their prompt-engineered-heads explode with its capabilities.

To be clear, Auto-GPT is technically very impressive, and for all we know, the intentions of its creators were pure. But the way opportunists have latched onto it is what makes people leery of AI in the first place. If you're wondering why the crypto bro who became a ChatGPT bro is now tweeting about Auto-GPT, here's why.

What is Auto-GPT

Auto-GPT is an open-source application, created by developer Toran Bruce Richards. It uses OpenAI's large language model, GPT-4, to automate the execution of multi-step projects that would have required back-and-forth prompting if you worked directly with GPT-4. In other words, it "chains together LLM 'thoughts', to autonomously achieve whatever goal you set," according to the GitHub repo page. Auto-GPT was released last week, so it's early days, but Twitter is already giddy over its use cases for some of the time-honored hustle bro strategies, including analyzing stocks(opens in a new tab), automating product reviews(opens in a new tab), and creating a podcast(opens in a new tab).

How does Auto-GPT work?

Auto-GPT is publicly available on GitHub. But you need some kind of programming experience to know how use it, since it runs on Python and requires OpenAI and Pinecone API keys. However, theres already at least one similar app, AgentGPT,(opens in a new tab) that doesn't require coding knowledge.

For now, users enter prompts directly in terminal. You're asked to describe the name, role, and objectives of your AI and specify up to five goals to achieve that objective.

In the demo video, "Entrepreneur-GPT" is given the role to "autonomously develop and run businesses with the sole goal of increasing your net worth." The goals are to "increase net worth," "grow Twitter account," and "develop and manage multiple businesses autonomously." Like a bloodhound with a scent, the demo of Auto-GPT is unleashed and immediately gets to work. No need to give it the next prompt. Auto-GPT will be ruthlessly and single-mindedly working to make its master the next magnate of affiliate-linked garbage or some other money-making scheme.

Why are hustle bros excited about Auto-GPT

The goal of Auto-GPT is to "make GPT-4 fully autonomous." For people looking to optimize their productivity (a hustle bro tenet), that's a dream come true. ChatGPT was already taking hustle culture to the next level. After it launched, social media was flooded with ChatGPT hustlers flaunting ways — legitimate or not — of using the LLM to automate jobs like copywriting, setting up affiliate marketing content, and even making tutorials on Udemy, as The Verge reported(opens in a new tab).

But such schemes still required human input to nudge ChatGPT to the next step. With Auto-GPT, you can simply describe what you want your AI to do, outline up to five goals, then kick up your feet and pat yourself on the back for outsmarting the system.

Does Auto-GPT live up to the hype?

Let's put aside the fact that affiliate marketing or freelance copywriting won't make you an overnight billionaire, and focus on the fact that it's a brand new technology that's explicitly described as "experimental." Like GPT-4, anything that's built with it is prone to inaccuracies and hallucinations. When using ChatGPT, you can check it for errors or recalibrate your conversation if the model starts to go off the rails. But with Auto-GPT, you might give it a project, then go to bed, leaving the model unattended for hours (which is the point). By the time you wake up, who knows what could've happened — especially if you told GPT-4 something like "make as much money as possible."

It's a classic jumping on the bandwagon situation. Except this bandwagon is perched on top of another bandwagon (ChatGPT) which is a very precarious position indeed. To be fair, claims that Auto-GPT is the "next big thing" are somewhat substantiated. OpenAI founding member Andrej Karpathy recently tweeted(opens in a new tab) his opinion that tools like Auto-GPT would be "the next frontier of prompt engineering." And the automation of ChatGPT tasks undoubtedly has massive potential.

But for now, we're just annoyed that hustle bros have a shiny new toy at their disposal.

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Cecily Mauran

Cecily is a tech reporter at Mashable who covers AI, Apple, and emerging tech trends. Before getting her master's degree at Columbia Journalism School, she spent several years working with startups and social impact businesses for Unreasonable Group and B Lab. Before that, she co-founded a startup consulting business for emerging entrepreneurial hubs in South America, Europe, and Asia. You can find her on Twitter at @cecily_mauran(opens in a new tab).


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