DailyDirt: Creative Bots Generating An Art Overload

from the urls-we-dig-up dept

Some folks are worried that robots are poised to take over too many jobs, leaving a path of unemployed destruction in their wake. Usually, this fear is limited to jobs related to manual labor and manufacturing, but programmers aren’t content to make software that will harvest crops or 3D print car parts. Here are a few projects where bots are creating works of art.

If you’d like to read more awesome and interesting stuff, check out this unrelated (but not entirely random!) Techdirt post via StumbleUpon.

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Comments on “DailyDirt: Creative Bots Generating An Art Overload”

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The Difference Between Literature and Art.

Darwin is not a system of machine authorship. It is a system of collective human authorship. Authorship by selection exists, as is well-known to any photographer. You take yourself and your camera to a place where certain elements are visible in certain relationships, and you wait for something to happen, or possibly you make it happen, and then, at the right moment, click. Darwin involves a process of people accepting or rejecting verses, and new verses being proposed for renewed selection. The idea of collective human authorship is well-known. There are traditional poet’s games in which you go around the circle, with each person adding a line to the poem.

Art and music schools work. They produce good artists and musicians. There’s a lot of technique in art and music, and this technique can be learned in a systematic course of instruction, or, possibly, programmed into a computer. MFA English programs do not work. They don’t produce very much in the way of good fiction writers or poets. Imaginative writing does not rely heavily on technique– rather, it relies on using the powers of abstraction inherent in language. If someone finds an occupation which involves writing non-fiction matter regularly, that will be enough to qualify him in the matter of technique to be a good imaginative writer. Walt Whitman was a printer and newspaperman. Edgar Lee Masters was one of the many writers and poets who were lawyers.

Of course, there is a penalty for literature’s non-technique. Literature tends to be on the intellectual side, emotionally remote. The writer of literature has persistent difficulty in engaging a potential audience which is not very intellectual. Art and music have a much greater capacity to carry emotional power, and to engage people whose response is primarily emotional.

By contrast with literature, about 1800, the United States produced what are called “primitive painters.” These were men who made their livings painting portraits, and a certain type of landscape, typically a picture of the customer’s house or farm. These men never made enough money to be able to stake themselves to a trip to Europe, which meant that they were never able to plug into the European art school system, and learn the body of technique which an ordinary professional European painter possessed. Primitive paintings have a kind of cartoon-like appearance.

There is one kind of art which is not very technique-driven– photography. The camera does most of what is necessary to make a picture. Good photographers possess what one might call, a way of seeing.

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