After this blog, I will only have one left to write before taking a summer break until school returns in September.

At this time when it seems like everyone is talking about AI and ChatGPT, I thought it might be interesting to revisit the creative process behind my blog “Between the Lines”, which I’ve been writing now since April 2012. I’ve now written over 460 blogs, a record of which I’m very proud.

Many people ask me where I find the inspiration to write so many blogs on such a “restricted” subject as stock market investing, specifically with a long-term investment philosophy.

Of course, the questions I receive from readers are an invaluable source of ideas – please keep sending me your questions and suggestions. Another source of inspiration comes from current events in the business world and the stock market. Another from our management clients and our subscribers to the COTE 100 Financial Bulletin. In short, I try to glean ideas from a variety of places through my reading of financial newspapers and company annual reports, as well as on the Web.

Couldn’t I use ChatGPT to develop ideas for potential blog posts? I confess to having tried it recently and did not find the result very conclusive. In fact, I found the result rather monotonous and technical, without much appeal to readers. Maybe I should keep experimenting over the next few months.

The exercise made me think about the threat from artificial intelligence. Could ChatGPT or other artificial intelligence tools soon replace a media columnist, a financial analyst or a portfolio manager? Will they be able to write a worthwhile book?

In my humble opinion (I am far from being an expert in the field), artificial intelligence will be able to perform an increasing number of tasks in the coming years. This is especially true for work that is repetitive or routine in nature. This is also true for much of what concerns numbers and the mechanical manipulation of formulas and computer programming and algorithms.

But what about the creative side? Where the human will continue to stand out from the computer is in its ability to weave links between seemingly totally different domains and to propose solutions to problems that are often off the beaten track. In my book Avantage Bourse, for example, I drew many analogies between long-term investing and the very different world of tennis, a field in which I have evolved since my childhood. I doubt a computer would make such a connection unless encouraged to do so.

A reader is attracted by stories, unusual anecdotes, comical examples from various fields. These lighten the reading and make it less technical, more human.

This is why despite the threat of artificial intelligence for many professions and sectors of economic activity, there will be many areas where humans will remain essential. Artificial intelligence will be an indispensable tool to facilitate the work of the author or the portfolio manager, but it will not replace his ability to create, innovate or interpret a lot of often contradictory information to arrive at a decision.

Allow me to draw another connection with a completely different field (which, in my opinion, would not be done by ChatGPT): biology. Animal evolution is largely based on the principle of error, on regular mutations of genes that allow animals to adapt to constantly changing conditions. The creative process goes through mistakes, through multiple iterations that will eventually lead to a different innovative result. I am far from convinced that artificial intelligence will one day be able to achieve the same creative results as humans.

On the stock market, I believe that many investors are worried about the arrival and development of artificial intelligence. It does indeed represent a threat to many sectors of activity, and AI should be one of the questions we ask ourselves before investing in a company on the stock market. But personally, I associate AI more with an attractive growth opportunity for years to come than with an existential threat.