2024 NCSG Recap

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NCSG 2024 -- Embracing Artificial Intelligence and Virtual Reality for Chimney Sweeps.

At the 2024 NCSG keynote, attendees were treated to a wealth of knowledge and insights from professionals in the artificial intelligence industry; with remarks from Tom Edwards, an esteemed expert in the realm of technology in consumer behavior, and demos conducted by From the Future, a pioneering company specializing in the application of virtual reality (VR) programs powered by artificial intelligence (AI).

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Artificial Intelligence and Its Impact On the Industry

The keynote speaker, Tom Edwards, brought his unparalleled expertise to the forefront, emphasizing the critical role AI will play in the chimney sweep industry's evolution. As a renowned authority on the convergence of technology and consumer behavior, Edwards shed light on how artificial intelligence has the potential to fundamentally change how people find information and businesses online with the proliferation of programs such as Microsoft’s OnePilot or Google’s Gemini. Edwards went on to emphasize that sales data collected by sweeps would now be easier than ever to analyze and use as part of a streamlined process to more easily target future customers based on previous customer experiences and data.

Artifical Intelligence and Its Uses

During his presentation, Edwards showcased a range of generative AI platforms such as OpenAI’s ChatGPT, Sora, Dall-E, and Mid Journey among others. Edwards demonstrated a variety of AI applications, from programs that excelled in image production, to groundbreaking new programs with the capability to create AI videos from a simple chat prompt.

In a workshop that followed Edward’s Keynote, he further explored how AI could be applicable for chimney sweeps by partnering with a Virtual Reality firm called From the Future. With a brief intro from Edwards, From the Future took the stage to demonstrate their innovative VR application, supported by AI. The demo From The Future showcased touched on how VR technology can be leveraged to create immersive experiences that simulate real-world scenarios. Their emphasis on using VR to expose individuals to potentially new and challenging situations, thereby simulating real world scenarios for new sweeps, underscored the transformative potential of AI-driven immersive technologies as a tool for education and professional development.

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An Easier Way To Train Employees

Throughout their portion of the keynote, the FTF team also emphasized the importance of knowledge transfer within organizations, emphasizing the potential time savings senior employees could expect to see from streamlining the onboarding process for junior employees. The knowledge transfer process focused on leveraging webinars, interviews, and curated content to build comprehensive knowledge bases. The demo resonated with the audience and offered a potential roadmap for effective onboarding and knowledge preservation within the industry.

Subject Matter Experts, Like Concrete Pete

Insights into the development process of AI entities, such as "Concrete Pete," made the process of AI knowledge transfer more accessible and served to highlight the collaborative efforts between From the Future and industry experts. After a Q&A between the audience and Concrete Pete about the intricacies of concrete creation, the audience gained valuable insights into the complexities of AI development and its potential to streamline operations and enhance customer experiences.

During the workshop Q&A session that followed the FTF demo, Tom Edwards further delved into real-world applications of AI through a guided ChatGPT demo. The demo illustrated how something as simple as an excel document containing sales data could be applied to create a marketing plan that included a logo, packaging, recipe, and brand messaging for a fictional company called “Hearthstone Harvest” that strove to create a protein rich multi-grain chip specifically for chimney sweeps. Edward’s demo also inadvertently demonstrated potential pitfalls in AI image generation, such as issues with text generation in photos. The demo stressed the need for preserving customer's proprietary information. After some background on the how AI might work in the chimney sweep industry, the Hearthstone Harvest chip creation process gave NCSG attendees a concrete example regarding the practicality of AI in crafting targeted marketing strategies. If you're interested in what an AI generated chip brand actually looks like, we took the liberty of including a recipe and visual below.


  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1/4 cup soy protein isolate
  • 1/4 cup flaxseed meal
  • 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast (for a cheesy flavor)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon paprika (optional, for a bit of spice)
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil


Preheat Oven & Prepare Baking Sheet:

  1. Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C).
  2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.

Mix Dry Ingredients:

  1. In a large mixing bowl, combine whole wheat flour, rolled oats, soy protein isolate, flaxseed meal, nutritional yeast, salt, garlic powder, onion powder, and paprika. Mix well to distribute the flavors evenly.

Add Wet Ingredients:

  1. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients. Pour in the water and olive oil.
  2. Mix until a dough forms. It should be sticky but manageable. If it's too dry, add a bit more water, one tablespoon at a time.

Roll Out the Dough:

  1. Place the dough between two sheets of parchment paper. Use a rolling pin to roll the dough out to about 1/8 inch thick. The thinner the dough, the crispier the chips will be.

Cut the Chips:

  1. Remove the top layer of parchment paper. Use a knife or a pizza cutter to cut the dough into chip-sized pieces. You can opt for traditional triangle shapes or get creative with your cuts.


  1. Transfer the baking sheet to the oven. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until the chips are crisp and golden brown. The baking time will vary depending on the thickness of your chips, so keep an eye on them.

Cool & Enjoy:

  1. Let the chips cool on the baking sheet for about 10 minutes. They will continue to crisp up as they cool.
  2. Once cooled, transfer to a bowl and enjoy your HearthStone Harvest Multi-Grain Protein Chips!
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Overall, the 2024 NCSG keynote provided chimney sweeps with valuable insights about the the transformative power of AI, from strategic considerations to practical applications. As the industry continues to embrace technological advancements, the integration of AI-driven solutions promises to revolutionize operations and elevate customer experiences in unprecedented ways.

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