ChatGPT update: ChatGPT plugins are out!

Wednesday, March 29, 2023 by Marek
ChatGPT update: ChatGPT plugins are out!

What are ChatGPT plugins?

Long story short, plugins are just software additions, which add a specific feature to an existing computer programs, apps or web browser. So plugins for ChatGPT are not different from that - the plugins will provide new functionalities to ChatGPT and improve our everyday interaction with it.

As we can read from an OpenAI blog post, ChatGPT plugins are specifically designed tools for LLM with safety as a core principle. And they should help ChatGPT to access up-to-date information, use third-party services and run computations.

So in summary, you can add those tools to your ChatGPT, allowing the chatbot to access websites and browse them to find tailored solutions regarding designed problems. So we have a hybrid - an amazing tool trained on data from up to 2021 combined with software allowing it to connect to the internet to provide up-to-date information. And many more - the only limitation seems to be developers' imagination.

There are already ChatGPT based plugins from Expedia, FiscalNote, Instacart, KAYAK, Klarna, Milo, OpenTable, Shopify, Slack, Speak, Wolfram, and Zapier. So official, licensed tools powered by ChatGPT to improve their performance and provide the best user experience.

And there are two ChatGPT plugins directly developed by OpenAI - web browser and code interpreter.

First one is actually a tool already discussed, so the one that allows ChatGPT itself to dig through the internet for all of the data you need. But without the limitations of any of the companies, which tailored certain pluginr. You wanted ChatGPT to have real-time data? Well, it’s out!

Second one is a much more intriguing tool - it contains a working Python interpreter in a sandboxed, firewalled execution environment. It can analyze the submitted files and interpret it to downloadable content! Want ChatGPT to go through pdf and find some correlations between data? Sure. You want it to make visualizations / graphs of every of those data, to understand the trends better? Yeah, it can do it as well. In just a few seconds.

Do you dig now how amazing it is? Do you have ideas how to incorporate it for your product?

How to use them?

Actually they are not open to the public yet. For OpenAI primary consideration is safety, so before releasing it out, they have to first deal with “properly sandboxing the execution so that AI-generated code does not have unintended side-effects in the real world.”

But you can sign it for an alpha access - so just request an access to ChatGPT API plugins waitlist. Hopefully you will be able to test all of the third-party plugins and two OpenAI’s and see how it performs in comparison to Bing Chatbot.

I mean Bing Chatbot is truly based on GPT-4 and has access to the internet already, but well… it can’t do all of the things ChatGPT’s plugins already do. I asked him to do the stuff which OpenAI showcased (find recipe, find ingredients and then add them to cart) and… see the outcome below.

screenshot of conversation with bing chatbot

How to build them?

You still can’t, but you can sign to a ChatGPT plugins waitlist as a developer. OpenAI declares that they are extending plugin access to users and developers, prioritizing a small number of developers and are planning to roll out a larger-scale access over time. So early bird get’s the worm - request access now and as you will be whitelisted build your ChatGPT plugin. Sounds pretty awesome, I know.

As we read more about ChatGPT third-party plugins, we read that they are “described by a manifest file, which includes a machine-readable description of the plugin’s capabilities and how to invoke them, as well as user-facing documentation.”

And what;s most important, is that OpenAI already offered a two steps program for creation of ChatGPT plugins:

  • Building an API with endpoints you’d like a language model to call
  • Create an OpenAPI specification documenting your API, and a manifest file that links to the OpenAPI spec and includes some plugin-specific metadata.

So you can already start working on your project as signed to the waitlist. So what are you waiting for?

Why should I use ChatGPT plugins?

a father building a robot with his daughter

First of all, those plugins are solving the problems many users had with ChatGPT, which were:

  • No access to up-to-date data / internet
  • It is not able to access external links or documents

And plugins are solving these issues (and providing some features like interpreting all of the submitted data).

Second of all, as ChatGPT API is out to the public, everyone can build their apps on top of it - and yeah, you can build an app to find a recipe, find ingredients locally and add them to your cart - but they will not be a plugins you can add to OpenAIs ChatGPT playground. With the increasing popularity of ChatGPT, maybe for marketing purposes it would be better to create such a plugin instead of an app?

And last, but not least - it’s another step forward. Maybe people will prefer the usage of ChatGPT playground instead of browsers in near future? We don’t know how users' preferences will change in upcoming months (because years sound too weird in an AI powered world, where world changing news are announced every week, or a couple of times per week).

And what are your thoughts on it? Give us your thoughts in social media, where you found this blog post.