Testing AI-Tools: Jenni.ai

With the "Deus Ex Mach­ina? — Test­ing AI Tools"-series we want to show you dif­fer­ent tools, that aim to sim­pli­fy writ­ing, design and research by using Arti­fi­cial Intel­li­gence. More on the "Deus Ex Machina?"-series can be found here.

A con­tri­bu­tion by Journ­al­ist-in-Res­id­ence Bet­tina Friedrich and Anna Köhler


"You Write, Jenni Com­pletes" — that is the motto of Jenni.ai. The AI writ­ing assist­ant helps you to write faster and more effi­ciently. While writ­ing, the pro­gram gen­er­ates sug­ges­tions on how a text could con­tin­ue and the human behind the key­board either agrees (the pro­gram then gen­er­ates the next para­graph of text) or dis­agrees (the pro­gram then writes a new suggestion).

Jenni.ai offers five func­tions: (1) The main func­tion is a text gen­er­at­or called "AI Auto­com­plete". (2) You can choose between dif­fer­ent types of texts (essay, blog post, email and Free­Flow) and between dif­fer­ent writ­ing styles (friendly, pro­fes­sion­al, aca­dem­ic, per­suas­ive, fac­tu­al). (3) The pro­gram can para­phrase and rewrite. (4) A cita­tion func­tion with the option to insert your own cita­tions or have Jenni.ai find sup­port­ing doc­u­ments, which can then be inser­ted in the text in vari­ous aca­dem­ic cita­tion styles (Har­vard, MLA 9 or APA 7). (5) A pla­gi­ar­ism check for the self-writ­ten text and the text cre­ated by Jenni.ai. How­ever, this is only included in the paid ver­sion and was there­fore not tested. Log­ging in works either via one's own Google account or with an email address. Wheth­er the pro­gram reads data from the inter­ac­tion with the user is not made transparent.

Fig­ure 1: Screen­shot from Jenni.ai. The pic­ture shows the set­ting of the text para­met­ers (Con­tent Type, Con­tent Tone) before writ­ing the text.

The AI behind the application

The com­pany claims on its web­site that Jenni.ai is used by writers from vari­ous uni­ver­sity insti­tu­tions (Cam­bridge, Har­vard, Aston, MIT) as well as Meta and Google. Accord­ing to its own inform­a­tion, the pro­gramme uses a com­bin­a­tion of GPT‑4 as well as "cus­tom data from each user". What that means exactly is not explained. The under­ly­ing source code/algorithm is also not published.

Since Jenni.ai works on the basis of the Chat­G­PT mod­el 4, the same errors creep into its use that are found in these tools, too. Occa­sion­ally, Jenni.ai invents sources and inform­a­tion and passes them off as true. The cur­rent ver­sion also points out that although Jenni.ai has a built-in pla­gi­ar­ism check­er, under cer­tain cir­cum­stances the writ­ing tool gen­er­ates already exist­ing phrases.

The rhetorical potential of the tool

The pro­gram is aimed at people who want to pro­duce demand­ing and longer texts. It is easy to get the desired res­ult: The pro­gram simply con­tin­ues writ­ing the texts the user has star­ted. The task of the human behind the com­puter is to decide wheth­er one wants to keep a text pas­sage or wheth­er the AI should gen­er­ate a new sug­ges­tion. Since Jenni.ai writes vir­tu­ally "by itself", writer's block can be eliminated.

Rhet­or­ic­ally, Jenni.ai is a step ahead of oth­er writ­ing tools espe­cially in its adapt­ab­il­ity to per­son­al styles and the tone of a desired text. The fact that writers are act­ively involved in the cre­ation pro­cess and can inter­vene in every step of the text gen­er­a­tion also makes Jenni.ai one of the most cus­tom­iz­able AI-sup­por­ted writ­ing assist­ants. Texts also sound less gen­er­ic for these reas­ons. Dur­ing the test, how­ever, it was notice­able that one not only has the option to give Jenni.ai new input, but it is often neces­sary to do so. In Free Flow mode, for example, Jenni out­put sev­er­al phrase vari­ations of the same con­tent instead of auto­mat­ic­ally switch­ing from the intro­duc­tion to the main part in the test essay:

"Ice vol­ca­noes have been a top­ic of interest for sci­ent­ists as they provide valu­able inform­a­tion on the intern­al struc­ture and com­pos­i­tion of moons in our sol­ar sys­tem."

"Addi­tion­ally, we will explore the poten­tial implic­a­tions of ice vol­ca­noes for future space explor­a­tion and our under­stand­ing of the ori­gin and evol­u­tion of our sol­ar sys­tem."

"In this essay, we will delve into the fas­cin­at­ing world of ice vol­ca­noes and explore their sig­ni­fic­ance in under­stand­ing our uni­verse."

"Join us on a jour­ney of dis­cov­ery as we explore the won­drous world of ice vol­ca­noes and unlock the secrets they hold about our uni­verse."

Jenni.ai has sug­ges­ted these phrases at small inter­vals for the test essay. Although the phrases do not fol­low each oth­er dir­ectly, they repeat them­selves every two to three sen­tences, which is why manu­al inter­ven­tion in the writ­ing pro­cess is indis­pens­able. Jenni.ai there­fore does not auto­mat­ic­ally provide a clear struc­ture for a text; this must be intro­duced manu­ally into the respect­ive texts through appro­pri­ate key phrases.

Anoth­er func­tion of Jenni.ai is to quote not only from the inter­net, but also from sci­entif­ic journ­als. This in turn can lend more cred­ib­il­ity to inform­a­tion, as the "know­ledge author­ity" of the authors of the sci­entif­ic art­icles can be trans­ferred from the journ­als to the texts writ­ten with Jenni.ai. Fur­ther­more, the pro­gram offers the "AskJenni" func­tion to para­phrase sec­tions for cer­tain groups of people (in a self-exper­i­ment, for example, "para­phras­ing for uni­ver­sity stu­dents" was sug­ges­ted as an option, i.e., adapt­ing the text to the level of know­ledge of uni­ver­sity stu­dents in order to pro­mote text com­pre­hen­sion), to write a sum­mary for a para­graph or to for­mu­late a coun­ter­ar­gu­ment. By for­mu­lat­ing coun­ter­ar­gu­ments, a top­ic can thus be looked at from sev­er­al angles and give an indic­a­tion for the per­son writ­ing which con­tents might become con­tro­ver­sial and there­fore need more attention.

Usage in science communication

A big advant­age for sci­ence com­mu­nic­a­tion is the fast pro­duc­tion of texts and the dif­fer­ent writ­ing styles Jenni.ai offers. Before the text gen­er­at­ing starts, the pro­gramme asks from which pos­i­tion one is writ­ing — from that of a stu­dent, a PhD stu­dent or a journ­al­ist, for example. The selec­tion of the "con­tent tone", i.e., the lin­guist­ic tone of the out­put text between pro­fes­sion­al, friendly, brash, aca­dem­ic and per­suas­ive, can also con­trib­ute to the per­son­al­iz­a­tion of the texts and thus adapt texts to selec­ted sci­ence com­mu­nic­a­tion formats. Jenni.ai is par­tic­u­larly help­ful for text-heavy formats — for example, sci­ence blogs, essays or news­pa­per art­icles — and can pro­mote the flow of writ­ing. The fact that writers can insert their own sources into the tool is par­tic­u­larly handy for sci­ent­ists who have already done research. Reviews of the pro­gram also state that Jenni.ai learns from its users and adapts to the writers' writ­ing style over time.


Even Jenni.ai is not spared from filler words and stand­ard­ized phrases. While this option often works — some phrases are, after all, stand­ard for a reas­on — there are occa­sions when cre­ativ­ity in writ­ing is called for.

Over­all, Jenni.ai is a very prac­tic­al tool that act­ively sup­ports the writ­ing pro­cess right as it hap­pens and can be quite effect­ive against writer's block. At the same time, there remains the need to check the pro­duced texts for accur­acy. Since Jenni.ai works on the basis of the Chat­G­PT mod­el 4, the same errors that can be found in this tool occa­sion­ally sneak their way into Jenni.ai, too.