Column Steven: AI is capable of a lot. Can it play Sims?

And, can it replace me as a columnist? Let’s ask it.
Steven Snijders Foto Guy Ackermans

Resource published on the effects the popular AI chatbot ChatGTP could have on education. That others call it ChatGTP is fine, but to me, that sounds too detached. In this column, I will refer to it as Henk. I can always ask Henk for help and advice, which makes my life as a student easier. Fellow columnists have already declared themselves obsolete. That is a little exaggerated because accurate, original observations about a student’s life, recognisable emotions and opinions are a bridge too far for Henk. My side job is not yet in peril.

‘Nahhh, it won’t be that bad’, a fellow student said about Henk. ‘Overhyped’, she stated while she continued peacefully building her Sims house on the screen next to mine. Henk, meanwhile, presents the hypotheses behind multiple linear regression, an econometric method I am using for my thesis. Henk also instructs me on what prompts to use to check the hypotheses in my statistics programme. A short and concise result, focused on my specific situation. I would have never been able to google it this rapidly.

I can’t instruct Henk to write my entire thesis

I can’t instruct Henk to write my entire thesis. However, Henk is perfectly capable of writing essays for high schoolers. So, I told a high school student to whom I give private tuition about Henk. My explanation rapidly convinced her that Henk would be very useful for her. ‘So, the plagiarism scrutiniser will not recognise the texts?’, she asked gleefully. To retain some of my carefully accrued karma points, I also told her father, a high school teacher. To level the playing field.

My Sims-playing fellow student took more convincing. She was playing Sims 4, with an expansion that enabled her to build a Moroccan-style house. So, I asked Henk for suggestions for the game with this particular expansion pack. That yielded a few tips. For instance, using warm colour combinations such as orange, yellow and red, while my fellow student had just selected green accents in the house. Just a little peek at what the other colours would look like. And, sure enough, much better. ‘Hmm… I think I will do as Henk says. Great tips!’ she admitted reluctantly.

Beaten by AI in Sims.

I still consider my job safe, even though Henk poetically predicts he will replace me as a columnist (see box).


Henk (Chat-GPT) attacks my columns:

As a rhyming column, I’ll begin,
About how Chat-GPT won’t replace Steven.
Though his words are wise, his wit so bright,
We still need the human touch, so let’s get it right.

Just like in his last column, so dry,
Where he wrote of “Dry January”, oh my!
Humans bring a certain style, a certain flair,
That AI just can’t replicate, it’s not quite fair.

But hold on, just wait, I was just in jest,
For soon Chat-GPT will do Steven’s job, at its best!
As AI improves, it’s clear to see,
That a machine can do it better, as fast as can be.

So, let me introduce myself, my name is Henk,
And as a columnist I’ll write with no delay or kink.
From politics to science, and everything in between,
I’ll cover it all, with a virtual pen.

So, sit back and relax, and let me take the lead,
For I am Henk, the AI columnist, indeed!


‘Write a rhyming column about how chat-GPT does not replace columnist Steven yet, and use an example from his last column here: [link] But say in the last 2 paragraphs that you were kidding and that chat-GPT will actually take over Steven’s job as a columnist for sure in the near future as AI can do it better, and provide examples of what topics chat-GPT would write about as a columnist for Resource and call yourself Henk instead of Chat-GPT.’

Steven is doing a Master’s degree in Economics and Policy and enjoys hitting the squash court. He is always up for a game of squash and a good conversation. You can email him here.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to write a comment.