Regarding the AI discussions I have been reading online:

I honestly believe our brains do nothing but reorganize the stories and perspectives we absorb in our lifetime – either through our bodies, or by way of our intellect. There is nothing new, nothing falls from the moon onto our pages. Very much like AI, that will not spit out the “perfect” or “correct” story each time, I think we play with the information. I think there will be people who get very good at feeding in the cues and provide the effective information to get AI to generate popular plays, paintings, “photographs”, poems.

But there will be people (like me) who enjoy the process of doing that themselves too much to hand that over. People like me who like the idea that art is human communication that DOES take place on a partially subconscious level, tapping into our silent knowledge and understanding of our shared (apart) experiences.

I think it’s like sex: you can’t really tell if the other person’s heart is in it or if it’s just an athletic activity for them. I am not sure we will be able to tell the difference with AI generated works, either. But I think – maybe in theater, especially, it being such a collaborative art that it craves a personal physical presence for the full experience – some of us purists will be looking for fingerprints. We will want to know that we are working with other living, breathing humans. Maybe we’ll better appreciate the wabi sabi aspect of art?

I think that the angry discussions are actually about money.

There was a time when dishes were made by artisans. Then at some point, factories could spit them out cheaper and faster and satisfy everyone with their ubiquitous, utilitarian presence. I think the same thing will happen with stories. We will find ways to pass the time, if that is what we want. There is money to be made!

Our lines of who is an artisan, who is an artist, who is a hobbyist will come into question yet again. And at some point, maybe we will learn not to give a shit and focus on the doing of art?

Who gets to make a living at it has always been arbitrary. Are you in good with a Duke, or a Pope?

I am not sure this is part of a process journal – but perhaps! Part of the process is asking myself what I am doing, and why. I am not going to be plugging my brief for this work into an AI to spit out options. Where is the fun in that? My choice to write isn’t a means to an end of any sort. Not now anyway. I think it was when I was younger.

This is a really nice to know about myself. It’s freeing.

Gloucester is stumbling all over my frontal lobe these days, and it is an absolute joy in the here and now.

I allow myself that. And think I have all the more reason to do so, in the face of this “threat” of AI.

5 Replies to “Progress”

  1. Both exciting and relevant reading Ren. Why? Not all certain. Some I take on faith. There’s a root and it looks like this – I have a certain trust in the human you. Not that I always understand or even agree… still, here I am (years worth).

    Recently I visited an AI chat website. Played some. Responses were? smooth, believable – but boring. Hollow somehow. No real edge. Long ago read about a sort’a parallel study regarding art. They analyzed art physical attributes through a human “focus group”. What was pleasing. Yea, they created some “art” from those results, and yes, it had an undeniable appeal. But it lacked any real spirit to my eyes. (pretty is not in itself art)

    The key notion that comes to me is “risk”. AI does not/cannot risk. We humans at our best, we do, we risk. When beginning we don’t know if we will realize what’s in our thoughts and feelings to express. And some of what’s best said draws outside the lines. There’s even a beauty in failing and growing from that labor along the way.

    Ha! You said it yourself, “words and photos (& typos)” are all yours. Yep.

  2. Yes. Those of us who enjoy writing (or ceramics, or photography, or painting, or…) will continue to work because we want to.

    The main cautions for those who want to be artists/artisans is 1)Don’t get hung up on comparisons with AI work (some folks may like AI stuff better than what artists produce) and 2)Don’t get self-righteous or hung up on the unfairness of it all when the so-called market gets flooded with AI-generated “product.”

    Continue to let the process be enough, and be aware that maybe during this transitional time it will be harder than ever for artists/artisans to make a living at what they love to do. I mean, alas, but so it goes. It may not stay like that forever.


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