How AI Can Benefit Technical Writers

To illustrate one way AI can benefit writing, I’ve taken an excerpt from Einstein’s work to illustrate the benefits and challenges technical writers face when using AI.  To create the AI version, I used a tool in Microsoft™ Edge through a ‘Discover’ extension setting the tone to ‘Professional’ and the length to ‘Medium’.  (I did not edit the first two columns.)

The principle of relativity; original papers

By Einstein, Albert, 1879-1955; Minkowski, H. (Hermann), 1864-1909; Saha, Meghnad, 1893-1956; Bose, Satyendranath, 1894-1974

Table of versions

Original segment from The Principle of Relativity

Professional and Medium version by Prometheus AI

Tech Writer

It is well known that if we attempt to apply Maxwell’s electrodynamics, as conceived at the present time, to moving bodies, we are led to asymmetry which does not agree with observed phenomena.  Let us think of the mutual action between a magnet and a conductor.  The observed phenomena in this case depend only on the relative motion of the conductor and the magnet, while according to the usual conception, a distinction must be made between the cases where the one or the other of the bodies is in motion.  If, for example, the magnet moves and the conductor is at rest, then an electric field of certain energy-value is produced in the neighbourhood of the magnet, which excites a current in those parts of the field where a conductor exists.  But if the magnet be at rest and the conductor be set in motion, no electric field is produced in the neighbourhood of the magnet, but an electromotive force which corresponds to no energy in itself is produced in the conductor; this causes an electric current of the same magnitude and the same career as the electric force, it being of course assumed that the relative motion in both of these cases is the same.

One of the problems with Maxwell’s electrodynamics as it is currently understood is that it does not account for the symmetry of the observed phenomena when a magnet and a conductor interact. The outcome of this interaction depends only on their relative motion, not on which one is moving and which one is stationary. For instance, if the magnet moves and the conductor is still, an electric field with a certain energy level is created around the magnet, which induces a current in the conductor if it is present in the field. However, if the magnet is still and the conductor moves, there is no electric field around the magnet, but only an electromotive force in the conductor that has no energy by itself, but produces an electric current of the same size and direction as the electric field in the previous case. The relative motion is assumed to be the same in both cases.

Maxwell’s electrodynamics is a set of equations that describe the behaviour of electric and magnet fields and how they interact with matter.  They also describe how changing electric and magnetic fields can create each other, leading to electromagnetic waves that travel through space at the speed of light. 

One problem with how Maxwell’s electrodynamics is understood today, is that it fails to recognise the lop-sidedness of this interaction when one or the other body is moving or still, the direction and speed of the movement.

However, the common view, calls us to distinguish between:

1.     A moving magnet with a stationary conductor – the moving magnet creates an electric field around itself that has a specific amount of energy.  The energy generates a current when the conductor crosses the current.

2.     A stationary magnet with a moving conductor – the moving conductor does not create any electric field around the magnet, but the magnet experiences an electromotive force with no energy of its own to cause a current in the conductor.

Assumption:  In both situations, the relative motion and current is the same in degree and direction.

In the sample above, AI did not eliminate the repetitive nature of the writing, clarify some of the concepts and it did not break the writing into bite-size pieces for ease of reading which is why I believe technical writing will remain safe for a good long while because AI cannot yet think with ‘creatively and laterally’ and it does not yet have the understanding to:

  • know and appeal effectively to the audience
  • understand the purpose of the document
  • use words, and words in context, that will relate to the reader.


Today, Artificial Intelligence is being considered to replace all kinds of writing jobs from writing letters, resumes, term papers, etc.  AI is also being used to compose music, create videos and unique art works. 

Some applications are amazing, inspirational and revolutionary, such as using AI to quickly search mountains of data available in the medical or legal profession.  As AI progresses, some professions will be more affected than others (see the lists of references below for additional reading).

Although Artificial Intelligence (AI) can and will affect our work as technical writers.  It will do so more as an aid to our research efforts, write first drafts, and help us save time by taking a first crack at unravelling convoluted information.  It will serve us by researching ideas, searching through data for answers and by combining everything into a smooth and palatable form.

Nevertheless, it will be our understanding of the strengths and limits of AI, our ability to ‘think outside the box’ and ask the right questions from AI that will be our saving grace. 

Technical writers are experts at reading, analysing, considering and thinking through what the most effective final form a document must be in to satisfy the requirement of the readers.  It is why — when it comes to clear and sensible, accurate writing — that technical writers always find ways to go boldly where no one has gone before!

Just for fun, I asked one of the AI tools if AI would replace technical writers, here is the answer:

AI will not replace technical writers soon because it still can’t write like a humanAI can assist technical writers in their work by automating some mundane tasks and producing helpful content to edit and refineHowever, AI will never replace writers who generate content with creativity and in a way that other humans can easily understand.

In summary, AI will not replace technical writers but will assist them in their work by automating some mundane tasks and producing helpful content to edit and refine.

For further reference

Geeks for Geeks, ChatGPT: 7 IT Jobs That AI Can’t Replace, 2 April 2020, sagarikabiswas.

Medium, 15 Jobs That Will Never Be Replaced by AI, 4 January 2020, Chan Priya.

L Makeup Institute, Top 10 Careers That Can’t Be Replaced by AI or Automation, 19 November 2020, ETS

Wired, A.I. Tries 20 Jobs, 18 March 2023 (Video)

World Economic Forum, These 6 skills cannot be replicated by artificial intelligence, 23 October 2020.

by Darlene Richard,  (not com)

For part one of this article, see