The Essence of Being Human
Why Artificial Intelligence (AI) Can Never be as Creative as Humans
“I believe, unswervingly, agonizingly, that it is in freaks that Being breaks through to the surface and reveals its true nature.”
― Olga Tokarczuk, Flights
The year 2022 has been an incredible chapter in technological history. There are four examples of Artificial Intelligence (AI) models that have forced us to re-think two age old questions: Can AI be as creative as humans? Do great writers and painters have a new medium or a new competitor in AI generated art?
1Open AI’s ChatGPT — an AI software designed to chat/converse with humans as a human would on a wide range of topics from the mundane to the deep and esoteric,
2Deep Mind’s AlphaCode — AI software that can code at times better than humans
3Open AI’s Dall-E 2 — a new AI system that can create realistic images and art from a description in natural language and,
4Midjourney — an AI system that can generate art based on a description in natural language. The more you describe the better the AI art.
This essay attempts to examine these developments and to understand whether AI can truly eat human creativity and ultimately be ‘human’ at its core. The essay is not an attempt to provide an incomplete answer. It is, rather, an attempt to catalyze further introspection.
How Does AI Learn?
Before we understand how AI models like ChatGPT work, we need to understand the difference between AI, Machine Learning (ML) and Deep Learning (also refer image above). At the highest level, AI attempts to mimic and surpass human intelligence i.e. our ability to learn and adapt to both familiar and unfamiliar situations especially unfamiliar ones. Machine Learning (ML) is a subset of AI, Neural Networks (NN’s) are a subset of ML and Deep Learning is a subset of NN’s. Per IBM, a good analogy is the matryoshka…