Robotic Art…wtf

I saw this Sunday Morning segment today about AI programs that “create” art. Various programs for creating visual art and music were highlighted. I found myself feeling kind of disturbed, even though the segment was interesting. What kept coming to mind was…WHY? There was no clear answer other than, for example, someone might want to create a quick drawing for some purpose, maybe a cloud with raindrops, so you draw a quick cloud and a raindrop or two on the screen and the computer learns that you want drops and completes the drawing for you. This could save a graphic designer some time, granted. Another example was for a musical composer who may be creatively blocked and could use a computer generated musical composition program to get some inspiration. OK, maybe so. However, isn’t all of this sort of …cheating? Isn’t being blocked sort of part of the process of creating? Doesn’t it feel like art is the LAST thing that should be roboticized? (OK, I may have just made up that word but I’m sticking with it.) Is art really art if there’s no human involvement in its creation at all? Isn’t art essentially a human act, a human experience, a representation of human emotion, thought, communication, etc.? I’m not on any kind of bandwagon to ban AI art. The development of these programs is essentially a creative act, right? Hmmm…


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