AI for Fun and Profit, and Augmentation?

There’s a lot of debate on how to capitalize on the success of generative-AI large-language-models like ChatGPT. While clever scientists and engineers are working to optimize the cost-basis of running these models, content creators and patent/license/copyright trolls alike are worrying about how they get paid. Content creators worry when the possibilities for competition just went exponential, or their past content is repurposed within an AI that largely obfuscates the sources. Patent trolls worry for the obfuscated sources.

Are we looking at it all wrong? If we simply accept AI-generated content as the statistically-amalgamated regurgitation-machine-expulsion that it is – can we stop looking to extend old ideas of revenue and instead use the shiny new tools to enhance our own capabilities and create new paths to revenue? After all, Napster vs Record Companies still concluded with iTunes, Spotify, Pandora…

Creativity is dead. The rebirth of creativity. AI seeds, not trees.

Maybe we need to cite an “alternative reference” concept of where to get these ideas? As a musician I can often list which bands I liked whose general vibe made it into a new song I wrote. Sometimes not. As a software architect I can usually very roughly trace a path through the various things I’ve learned and how they inform a new design – but I also realize some of the dots being connected are uniquely mine. So – they are all “influences” for me.

Rather than citing references in an AI model, we could instead consider them influences as a writer or an artist would see it?

Another thought. If the AI became equivalently proficient in the creation of music as it has been of late with words and then perhaps we would see/hear this argument differently.

Once, stories were told from one person to the next, and knowledge was passed.

Eventually, letters and words and it got easier. People would read and summarize, reference and write anew. Their ideas were magnified when the printing press came around. The snowball was rolling down the hill.

A bit later the internet dramatically shifted how knowledge and creative endeavors could be shared. Suddenly everyone could publish their ideas.

Enter generative AI. It’s been trained on all of the above. Good and bad. Right and wrong. Smart and dumb.  It doesn’t know the difference. Don’t be fooled into thinking it does.

A part of me initially worried about this scary new world. If people stop creating and start simply using this extra clever regurgitation/synthesis machine, it will be the death of creativity, right? Of original content! And for lazy folks, that may be true, but what would they have achieved anyhow?.

What if, instead, the basic building blocks of knowledge and creativity have been leveled up in a nearly incomprehensible way?

Setting aside all the lawyers who have drawn their swords. Leaving behind all the content creators who think they deserve a piece of any wins they can get on a suddenly, much longer content derivative versus fair use argument.

Allowing all of that to be the squeaky wheels of real change, can we envision a reality where the baseline of knowledge, or at least awareness of knowledge, has been exponentially leveled up?

This is only the beginning. Run toward the explosion to succeed.

No generative language models were used in the writing of this post, including ChatGPT.  Though maybe it would be better if they had.

And except for the top image, which was generated via Invoke-AI Stable-Diffusion invoker.