Although ChatGPT was unrivaled when it first launched near the end of 2022, there are now thousands of tools based on proprietary and open-source models for generative AI applications.
There are loads of useful ones out there that can make your life easier and you can try or get a lot out of these generative AI apps for free. Here’s how I use AI to get through my personal and professional tasks, and how you can too.
1. Home remodeling
Admittedly, I’m not the most imaginative or creative person when it comes to interiors. Even if I vaguely know what I want to do with my living space, I’m still incapable of visualizing feasible designs that I can live with or pull off.
Instead of forcing myself to learn exterior and interior design, I use generative AI to visualize my abstract ideas, and I’ve found a handy app for the job: Remodel AI.
Remodel AI is a freemium tool for creating photorealistic alterations to your existing living spaces. The app lets you experiment with color palettes, themes, furniture choices, and room layouts with just a couple of taps.
2. Summarizing lengthy articles
I love reading, but I’m not always in the mood for lengthy articles. Sometimes you just want the gist of an interesting opinion piece, or need the key facts from a news article, without having to read each of them from start to finish.
Chatbots like ChatGPT, Copilot, and Bard can summarize lengthy articles for you on demand. Just paste the entire article into the input field and ask for a summary, or enter a prompt like “Summarize this article:” followed by its URL.
You can modify your prompt for custom requests, like finding specific sections or itemizing highlights in bullet points.
Likewise, chatbots can summarize full-length books. I prefer using Bard and Copilot since they scour the internet for relevant information and reviews when writing summaries. ChatGPT’s language model writes and understands natural language, too. However, its GPT 3.5 model, which you can use for free, has a knowledge cut-off date of January 2022, so it can’t summarize more recent books.
3. Creating efficient workout routines
A few months into weight training, I hit my first plateau. I knew I needed to ramp up my volume and intensity, but I was lost on how to begin progressive overload training. The process scared a first-timer like me.
Instead of trying random exercises I found online, I used AI tools to create a more structured, efficient program. One of my favorites is Fitbod. It uses machine learning to track workouts, analyze results, and suggest ways to apply progressive overload training safely.
4. Seeking mental health support
I’m a naturally anxious person, and I fret about the most trivial things. My therapist has guided me through several steps to manage anxiety as it comes on, but I keep forgetting them during attacks. Fortunately, I found some AI-driven apps that help me stay organized while panicking.
Whenever I feel overstimulated, I like using Wysa. It’s a freemium app with an AI-driven chatbot that can converse and guide you through cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) exercises.
Admittedly, Wysa’s language model and NLP system aren’t as sophisticated yet. I vent to chatbots (e.g., ChatGPT, Bard, and Bing) if I want lengthier, more extensive responses while I express what I’m going through. They often provide helpful, fact-based replies, and serve as an outlet for me to articulate my feelings.
5. Organize your thoughts
As a writer, I struggle to get my thoughts in order. I could spend hours staring at a blank document if I don’t know where or how to start writing. Even the most brilliant ideas remain merely figments of my imagination until they finally materialize into tangible, visible output much later.
To work more efficiently, I organize my thoughts with an AI transcription tool called AudioPen. I basically babble for a few minutes while AudioPen generates transcripts and summaries. Once all my thoughts are laid out, I organize them using freemium mind-mapping tools like Taskade. Mind maps give me a clearer vision of my ideas, and help me put pen to paper more efficiently.
6. Translating foreign text
Modern language translators use sophisticated AI models to produce more accurate output. Take DeepL, for example. Its natural language processing (NLP) system analyzes the context and tone behind inputs, and then it scans its database for the appropriate translations. They convey messages far better than direct translations do.
When translating dialects from specific countries and regions, I use AI chatbots with access to real-time data. DeepL is accurate but limited to the top-spoken languages. Meanwhile, Bard and Copilot can translate almost any dialect if you guide them with enough context and references in your detailed prompts.
7. Generating art
Text-to-image generators have come a long way from producing obscure, cryptic output. Modern AI models like DiffusionBee (Stable Diffusion), Dall-E, and Midjourney can now produce vivid images while imitating a broad range of art styles. Whether you’re envisioning fantasy worlds for concept art or creating hyper-realistic portraits to support your writing, these models can go a long way toward bringing your ideas to life.
Unfortunately, these image generators come with monthly subscriptions. A freemium alternative I often use is Playground – it generates unique output and alters existing images based on text-based prompts.
Just note AI image generators can pull elements from third-party sources, so you’ll want to ensure your images are cleared for use before you include them in commercial projects.
8. Transcribing meetings and recordings
Before AI transcription tools hit the market, I had to transcribe meetings manually. I would type out notes during meetings, and also listen to their recordings for the transcription afterward. The process was very time-consuming. Even as an experienced writer, I’d often spend hours hours transcribing a single meeting or interview.
AI-driven transcription tools have changed the game. They can transcribe audio clips in real time, allowing users to focus on participating in meetings. Taking notes and recording minutes are very distracting.
One of the most reliable tools I use is Notta. Link it to your Zoom and Google Meet accounts, and you’ll automatically get transcripts after every meeting. Of course, you can also upload audio and video recordings to generate transcriptions.
9. Crafting resumes
Recruiters go through dozens of resumes a day to find ideal candidates for their companies. Unless you stand out from the other applicants, you might not even pass the initial screening process. So, instead of recycling generic resume templates, build a unique one using AI.
I recommend OpenResume and Teal. You’ll find several resume builders online, but most charge steep rates for plain, repetitive designs. Alternatively, these two builders offer functional freemium versions. They also come with intuitive features – just fill in the boxes with your credentials and choose your preferred layouts.
Tip: Remove generic buzzwords like “professional” or “goal-oriented” from your resume. To impress hiring managers, specify your years of experience, explicitly explain your previous role’s responsibilities, and quantify your achievements with hard figures, like how much revenue your efforts brought in, or how many leads your work helped to convert.
10. Composing complex emails
I often find it hard to get emails out the door; I tend to overanalyze if they come across as rude or aggressive, especially when messaging colleagues. To hasten the process, I generate writing prompts with AI.
I’ll tell ChatGPT, Bard, or Google Labs the gist of my message, and then they’ll rephrase it for clarity. Afterward, I’ll edit the output to match my tone. That’s so much easier and quicker than second-guessing myself while working through my inbox.
I also run my emails through Grammarly. It catches misspelled words, grammatical mistakes, typos, and awkward phrases that I missed. Don’t brush off these errors; they’ll make your emails look unprofessional.
These are just some examples of how I incorporate AI into my daily routine. There are countless other ways to utilize it, whether you need to generate synthetic speech or write a blog for your website, you’ll find a suitable tool. Keep exploring various AI models. And if you’ve been meaning to learn new tech skills this year, anything related to AI is almost guaranteed to be in demand.
Image credit: All screenshots taken by the author.
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