Hmmm. This has been interesting… I’ve been using the Bing Chat tool in the Canary Channel version of Windows 11 lately. I just asked it to shed some light on a Windows Console (aka Windows Terminal) tool that I’ve been working with lately. Let me provide the query I used while testing Bing Chat AI text generation:
“Give me 400 words about the Winodws Console colortool”
I’ll provide the results as a blockquote under the next heading. Then I’ll explain what’s good about it and where — IMO at least — it falls a little short.
Results from Testing Bing Chat AI Text Generation
Notice that the chatbot correctly interprets my mistyping of Windows as “Winodws” in the input, and gives me the answer I wanted. Good stuff! Here’s what it told me:
The Windows Console Colortool is a utility that helps set the color palette of the Windows Console. It can be used to apply the new default color scheme and several alternate pre-defined color schemes or even schemes of your own1. The tool is open source and hosted on GitHub2.
To use the Colortool, open up Command prompt and run: colortool [scheme name in schemes/ e.g: campbell]. Right-click on the window title to access the ‘Properties’ dialogue box. Once the properties dialogue box opens press OK (which saves the color change)1.
Notice it provides highlighted, hyperlinked text to additional references (which show up in the lead-in graphic as footnotes 1 and 2). It’s essentially a rewrite of descriptive information from the colortool’s github page. Curiously, that does not show up as the primary reference here (it’s number 2, though). Concerns about the accuracy of the material I’ve seen voiced in other analyses are apparently NOT an issue when you ask the chatbot to keep the text short. Everything it says it 100% accurate and verifiable.
OK Then, What’s Missing?
The text does not explain that the ZIP file for the colortool must be downloaded and unpacked into a folder that’s either included in the $PATH environment variable, or made the focus of the Command Prompt (or PowerShell) session in which the tool gets invoked. It just assumes all those details have been handled and jumps straight into the syntax and behavior of the tool itself.
That’s all well and good, but makes a telling demonstration of why AI chatbots can help, but not necessarily take over, for knowledgeable human actors with a more nuanced understanding of the context in which they’re operating. At least not yet, anyway…
It’s extremely interesting stuff, and is definitely going to help me with my job of explaining things to readers in the future. If you’re running the Canary Build (25393) for Windows 11, click the Bing symbol at the upper right of the default Edge window to dig in and try it for yourself. Great fun!