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Digital Spielberg: coming soon


Anna Zhygalina, Catherine Lange

Humanity is preparing for the fact that the AI will remove us from a numerous of household duties soon.

However, the development of the neural network exceeds all expectations. So, AI is already stepping on the heels of filmmakers. Recently AI Benjamin has created the film in just two days. A sci-fi short film “Zone Out” shocked the audience by its storyline. Digital cast director Benjamin mercilessly and coolly disfigures the actors faces from the old black and white movies. It turns out, that the main secret is the content, which the Benjamin’s developers “fed” it. So what is it - a data compilation or creativity? Will neural networks be able to replace people at the creative positions and if so, how soon it comes? Are we already being prepared for the transition to "posthuman” form perhaps? And who controls all this?

We will not be able to keep it under control

Futurologist, the NASA computer engineer and author of books about AI Peter SCOTT comments in an exclusive interview for Bitnewstoday.com on the issue of AI's creative capabilities and existential threats to humanity.

“At the heart of creativity lies randomness, appropriately channeled. We have an AI that can compose music indistinguishable from Bach. That already meets several criteria for being creative. Now, should it do this?”.

Peter SCOTT considers that the prohibition would deny the creativity of the computer programmer who wants to expand this field.

"The AI-created movie Zone Out is not so much a threat to screenwriters and directors, currently, as a novelty that will get attention for being new. But of course it makes us wonder whether an AI could be the next Steven Spielberg. That much is inevitable, but the question is whether it is tens of years away or hundreds".

The scientist himself considers the key question whether AI can get out of control, and touch this issue in his book “Crisis of Control. How Artificial SuperIntelligences May Destroy or Save the Human Race”.

And then he gives an example when it has already happened. "I was working at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in 1988 when the computer I was connected to suddenly went down. The Morris worm crippled that and many others around the world, spreading unintentionally invasively".

We used to think of unintentional accidents as software bugs. “The consequences of a bug in an AI complex enough to exhibit artificial general intelligence (AGI) could make it paranoid (think HAL 9000 from 2001: A Space Odyssey) or megalomaniacal (think Skynet from Terminator)”.

The scientist believes that we also use random scenarios and strategies in our creativity. But what if an accident will cease to be unintentional? Peter SCOTT argues that it would be an important requirement for the development of artificial general intelligence.

"An AGI would be incredibly valuable in almost any sphere, since it would have human-level intellect combined with the processing power and data of today's computers. But once AI becomes that capable, it will exceed human intelligence rapidly through recursive self-improvement, and we will be unable to contain it. Eliezer YUDKOWSKY has proven that experimentally”.

The human ear will notice the false

Yacin BAHI, a mathematician and artist, CEO and co-founder of the silicon valley teach VC backed startup, sees AI as an opportunity for human development.

The scientist said Bitnewstoday.com that AI allows you to automate the generation and synchronization of music and video content, and helps creative people to find their target audience and increase the revenue.

"Sound is very important for modern films because it adds the necessary volume to the movie. We got used to be bombarded with information and flashing symbols, so this is one of the main factors keeping the audience emotionally engaged."

Yacin believes that the quality of the sound in the film influences its chances of success and how it will be perceived by the audience. "Interestingly enough it is substantially harder to have an AI create great sound track than it is to have it create a video. The human ear is exceptionally efficient at detecting a note out of tune".

In suffer from the lack of human touch

Dean Lachiusa producer and operator of the film festival MetroFilmFestival, in an interview with Bitnewstoday.com said that he saw stunning graphics and CGI movies created by neural networks, and found the future of 3d animation in it.

“However, AI could never create a loss of jobs for creative professionals. And AI content productions will only lead to computer generated content like CGI - because, the human "subtext" is lost whenever the subject matter is animated or artificially produced”.

Dean take as example the film "A Scanner Darkly" which uses the technique of rotoscopy. Despite there are actually real-life actors playing, the film suffers from a lack of “human touch" and, accordingly, is perceived less emotionally.

AI underestimate even by its developers

Marshall BARNES, an R&D engineer who has been involved with AI off and on since the early 1980s as a counter researcher and now is one of the most outspoken critics of artificial intelligence, gave a detailed interview for Bitnewstoday.com by this issue. BARNES believes that we underestimate the capabilities of AI because of our misunderstanding of the whole system: "At the moment I would say that AI as autoproducer of creative content is still in the novelty stage, with many people underestimating what its true potential is, and I include AI developers among the group".

Marshall BARNES absolutely convinced that anyone who still hopes that AI will not replace people from the creative professions, is simply naive or suffer from digitalcentrism.

"After I considered the possibility of AI to replace the jobs, I determined that the entire process of creative production could be done, eventually by AI. If someone wanted an entire robotic and AI movie studio and cost wasn't an issue, I already know how to do it, except you'd still need human actors - because people aren't willing to give that up yet. I could do a lot in that area, if I chose to, but I won't, because I'm on that side of humanity”.

The real threat is not from AI, but from the global elite that it serves to

BARNES argues that the dominance of humanity is coming to the end, and there is already the considered version that humanity will be replaced by the “posthuman” form.

“I believe now the long-standing fear of robots has been overly hyped to a certain degree today. The real threat is from the human elite that will use robotics and AI to replace what they deem as the unwanted, unwashed, masses and others that they don't need - and they need precious few of us. In fact, if you dramatically reduce the human population, some jobs would just disappear on their own and no need anyone to do them”.

Marshall agrees with the concerns that Stephen Hawking and Elon Musk have already expressed about the fact that AI will soon replace humans altogether, while the developers of neural networks are working hard for the benefit of the world super elite, which does not want to lose the position of total control - while AI serves them to reinforce these position.

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