SpinCharm t1_je5f3mj wrote

More and more of people’s interactions online with social media will be actually with AI. People will slowly lose the ability to discern the difference between real people’s posts, comments, photos, and videos and AI created ones. And they won’t care anyway since they receive the same stimulation and satisfaction.

AI social bubbles will be generated by actors (corporations, foreign governments, individuals) with political, economic, or malicious motives. “Hurding” will be the new buzzword used to describe the manipulations done to people en masse, an amalgam of hurt and herding.

Over time people will lose a sense of actual belonging to their social, familial, and geographic tribes and will form emotional and psychological alliances with AI-generated ones.

Governments will be a reflection of the will of the most successful actors and not of the people. People will ignorantly strongly defend those governments, believing them to represent their own interests without realizing the level of endemic manipulation that created those beliefs.

The will of the people will fade over time as they realize that their individuality was little more than a false perception supported by their relative isolation and ignorance of the commonality of thought and deed.

Governments will ensure that basic living conditions remain sufficient to meet the basic needs the population, further reducing the need for most to seek behaviours and thoughts outside their hurd.

Those seeking power will focus on creating the broadest and most effective environments to capture the hearts and minds of the greatest numbers. Competing for resources will be centred on headcount. Success at power will be measured by those with the highest number of members.


SpinCharm t1_je1viir wrote

One thing that keeps amateur prospecting popular is that as technology improves, new detectors come out they are more sensitive, more discreet, and can detect gold further underground than previous models. So people can go over the same well-trodden fields and find gold that others previously overlooked.


SpinCharm OP t1_ja383qt wrote

I look at it as a new concept - the mass production of distinctiveness. Mass producing individualism.

The very idea strips the person of any real uniqueness. If you are one of countless millions getting something made just for you, by the same company or machine or software, and the other millions are doing the same thing, then just how unique and distinctive are you really going to be? And while it may be individualized, if there really any significant difference between each of those millions?

I think at best, it gives the illusion of individualism. The customer will likely believe, or choose to believe, that theirs is somehow superior. Unique. Tailored. Because in one sense it is. But when you take a step back and look at the larger picture, there’s really nothing unique about any of it.

And that’s where I start feeling disturbed. When millions of people get their validation and affirmations from illusions, then that population is losing control.


SpinCharm OP t1_ja2hu1q wrote

One thing that is common among all your examples is that in each one, there were people discussing, debating, critiquing, influencing, and petitioning. We need vigorous discussion from many viewpoints. We need stimulating arguments to help inform not only other's, but our own ideas and opinions. Perspective - use it or lose it as a wise old book once taught me.


SpinCharm OP t1_ja2hf0u wrote

I agree that things are not valuable just because they are made by human hands. That woman using AI to design a dress results in a dress that was made by AI from a human's ideas. AI in this example is a tool, like the chisel that carves the marble statue.

But a dress made entirely by AI with no guidance by a person? To me, these lose value quickly regardless of the uniqueness of the product. I subscribe to several r/architecture r/architecturePorn etc. subreddits in here and there are frequently posts of images of buildings created by AI. They are fantastic! Original, innovative, breakthrough concepts. But after the first dozen of these the wow factor dims; after the first 100 of these they lose their lustre completely.

Why? Because for me at least, they are no longer original creations of someone's imagination. They become an endless line of computer-generated imagery that holds no emotional connection or value.

Perhaps I bore easily or I have a low tolerance for repetition. I felt the same way about those tik tok videos that morph a plain face into a fabulous one. After a year of seeing them, they are meaningless. Valueless. Even though each one is a product of a person's ideas, they become all the same at a higher, perhaps meta, level. "Oh, there's software that can make a person look like anything. Oh look - here's the thousandth person using software to change their features.". Yawn.

I suspect when the first person wears an AI-generated outfit, it will be noticed and probably raved about. But when the 1000th person does it, will it generate the same enthusiasm, or will most people switch off? And at a broader level, when the millionth person uses AI to create something, or the billionth, will anyone take notice? Will anyone care? I suspect not, because there will be little value in something that is mass produced for the individual, in the same way that there's little value in something mass produced for the masses today.


SpinCharm OP t1_ja2fj6n wrote

There's also the unknown subset of viewers that would like to just get lost inside the alternate realities of fictional tv, disconnecting from contact with people for as long as possible. If that experience was generated and controlled by AI with no outside involvement, it could be quite addictive to some.


SpinCharm OP t1_ja21sgg wrote

When I ponder that concern, it fits into a broader one of the value of anything computer generated. “Value” in this context isn’t just monetary or qualitative. It can also be trust. What value can we place on a news article written by computer if we have trust issues with it? We’re already seeing news videos comprising of a generated human speaking generated vocalisations on news topics. What is the value of this and how is that value affected by our trust of its source?

I imagine a future where we are inundated with a limitless supply of AI material. Video, music, printed word, appliances, living quarters, politicians, food.

While all of it will have some value, value is relative to the individual and to other similar generated outputs. But I am currently thinking that much of this will be eclipsed in value by those created by persons. The value of something made by a person instead of by machine will increase in those cases where it is of sufficient quality.

In that regard, AI products may provide a higher baseline of convenience and standard of living. But I suspect that we will start valuing things made by persons for their scarcity, uniqueness, and ability to communicate at a personal level.

When I extrapolate where I see AI going, I can imagine, like most of us, an idealized world of automation, simplification, adornment, convenience and safety. But when I placed myself in that picture I can’t help but think that I’m going to quickly become bored with all the spoon feeding and pampering that I imagine possible. It will all have value, but when we’re completely smothered by it all, it’s relative value diminishes.

We all value roads, and we couldn’t do without them for long. But they’re ubiquitous, expected, utilitarian, and endless. We all value them if we think about it, but for some of us, we value trails more. Or walkways. Or air corridors.

Because we receive a higher qualitative experience - higher value.

I suspect after people have gotten past this current fascination with digital watches, they’ll turn (back) to those things of higher qualitative value. Like art.


SpinCharm OP t1_ja1zi7b wrote

I’ll take a stab at it. Art (to me), is something created by someone that is intended to communicate at an emotional level.

While there are examples of things that meet that criteria that clearly aren’t art, I think almost all creations that are intended to be considered art by their creator meet that criteria.

Right or wrong I’ll stick with that for now and revise it in time. But with that, the question then is, Can AI create art?

Can AI create something with that intention of communicating at an emotional level?

So first, can AI create anything to begin with. I’ll just assume yes to keep the thought progressing. Next is whether AI can have intention.

Well, a computer virus has the clear intention of malicious acts. So computers or computer code can be said act with intent. I’m not particularly happy with that perspective but I can’t ignore precedent.

So that leaves whether a computer can intend to communicate at an emotional level. Clearly they can. A program can be executed that has the intention of eliciting an emotional response from a person.

So where does that leave us with my definition of, “Art (to me), is something created by someone that is intended to communicate at an emotional level.”

I have almost boxed myself into a corner here but there’s one out left and I’m going to take it. A computer isn’t “someone”. It’s “something”. Which means we need to review the classic agreement that computers aren’t people, no matter how clever they evolve to be. Neither is anything else in the universe. The only thing in the entire universe that is “someone” is a person.

If that changes in the future then I’ll need to review my definition. But for now, it stands. A computer can’t create art because, regardless of how complex its intentions are, how creative it’s output is, and how it makes us feel, it isn’t human and therefore what it creates isn’t art.

It’s something else. I don’t know what it is. But I (as of now) don’t consider it art. I don’t consider paintings created by dogs or monkeys art either. I don’t consider sunsets, or supernova, or the Fibonacci sequence art either.

Perhaps there needs to be a new word to describe the output of AI so that we preserve the meaning of art.

Or we need a better definition. But if we think we need a better definition, then we’re implicitly doing so to make a distinction between human and AI output and therefore don’t actually need to complete the exercise as we’ve already decided there’s a distinction we wish to make.

Getting back to your point. We need a way to define art in order to distinguish a difference between human and AI generated art.

But I think logically that’s no longer necessary. The need itself means we implicitly agree that there’s a difference. The rest is semantics.


SpinCharm OP t1_ja1tn7a wrote

Spoken like a proper statistician and scientist.

Fortunately, I am neither, and am simply writing creatively. It's an opinion piece, intended to stimulate thought and discussion.


SpinCharm t1_j99rcn8 wrote

It actually only does anything of significance to faces. Bodies, backgrounds, sky etc are mostly just blurred or unsharpened. So it’s not looking to recognize a tree then improve it with a much clearer tree. But if it finds a face it can make assumptions about the eyes and replace them with supposedly exactly the same eyes that are much sharper.

Unfortunately the combination of “improving” the eyes, nose, ears, chin, and hair results in something that really isn’t the same person. But to a stranger, it would look like an improvement as they’d have no baseline expectations on what the person actually looks like.


SpinCharm t1_j944ry1 wrote

It’s interesting but it generates faces that aren’t faithful to the original. I tried an old photo of myself, sister, and four close friends when we were kids. It was grainy, blurry and black and white.

The result was that two of my friends looked correct, likely because they were the two that were clearest in the original. But everyone else was changed. It wasn’t me, my sister and my friends, it was four new faces that bore only slight resemblance to the original.

It’s using AI to construct approximate facial features, but in doing so, generates new faces. It isn’t enhancing existing ones, unless the existing ones are very clear to start with.

It’s still nowhere close to being able to fool the brain. We’re hard wired to recognize faces. We know instantly when there’s even the slightest difference, and this thing creates massively different faces when it has to.


SpinCharm t1_j6fnxwn wrote

Interesting but doesn’t really start to draw a line between machine learning and AI. It lays a foundation of understanding of statistics, but stops before it relates them to the broader concepts of machine learning, ie How are these statistical forms used within machine learning?


SpinCharm t1_iyoymih wrote

The live version is similar, yes, but it’s instantly and constantly recognizable as different than the album version.

I love that the musicians are focused on quality of sound, not performance. You can see them being themselves rather than staging.