Machine learning creates professional level photographs

Discussion in 'Philosophy' started by movingfinger, Jul 15, 2017.

  1. Norman 202

    Norman 202 i am the light

    with the exception of, maybe, religon i don't think that statement has been true for a couple of hundred years, in western culture, at least. since when our science and art has experienced vastly increased diversity
  2. OMG!

    From the beginning, I have been willing to accept things made by AI as art, in and of themselves and on its face. It is YOU, and others, who've insisted on bringing various concepts into this, such as the concept of the maker, the concept of soul, telling us that "even if you can't tell the difference [between man-made and AI-generated art] and both are identical on the suface, one has soul and the other doesn't."

    I responded to your statements and the statements of others conceptually because you approached this conceptually from the beginning. Art produced by an AI system doesn't need the Duchamp conceptualization to be art. That's simply an explanatory aid to get you to understand why AI art's supposed "soullessness" (a conceptual drawback you've invented) is not a problem for me.

    For the very same reasons a Monet painting can be art, an AI-produced sculpture can be art. That AI art would have some elements of conceptual art because of how it's made and can be thought about doesn't, for me, change the fact that it can also be accepted as art in the very traditional sense as well.
  3. Funny, I'd say using "soul" occurs more often when people have NO IDEA what they mean or want to say.
  4. Sounds like photography.
  5. Sure, and every year various AI competitions are held, including some for the arts. The question remains, though, who or what is the winning artist? It can't be the computer because the very same computer, if I have anything to do with it, can only draw a stick figure doing jumping jacks. It can't be the code either because the code didn't write itself and how the heck is it going to spend the $10,000 prize?

    PS That quote is good description of your camera firmware.
    Last edited: Jul 27, 2017
  6. Leo . . .

    Who are what is the artist of Fountain? Is it Duchamp? Is it the guy who made the urinal? Is it the viewer who sees it as art?

    If Beethoven is the artist who composed the violin concerto and Guarneri is the artist who made the violin and Heifetz is the artist who performed the concerto on the violin and Bernstein is the artist who conducts it all, who or what is the artist who created what I heard last night at Symphony Hall?

    Who cares?

    I started out saying that an AI machine can produce art. If you need to figure out the artist in that picture in order to determine that there's art, be my guest.
  7. Norman 202

    Norman 202 i am the light

    Phil, don't you think the soul is an antiquated notion, borne out of repression? Personally, I'd put all our artistic achievements down to the brain and central nervous system.
  8. OK I"ll give it a shot: code is a medium and programmers are artists.
  9. Leo, I want also to dare to anticipate your next question (based on past experience) which might be why I didn't include the machine known as the violin as one of the makers of art. Well, in one sense, it is. But in another sense, as I've said the last 17 times you've asked, a violin is a different sort of machine IN KIND from an AI machine system.

    We may have control over our cars, but when they slide on the ice we often say, and really mean, that we lost control of our cars. The same can happen with a computer. We may regain control over our cars and even have them pounded into a non-operational block of steel, showing our virile superiority! And we can do the same with a computer. But to the guy who gets killed in the car crash, the combination of the power of the machine he was driving and the slipperiness of the ice kind of took control over his body's--if not his soul's--fate.
  10. "a violin is a different sort of machine IN KIND from an AI machine system."

    I agree, one of them is programmable.
  11. Yes, and the programmability gives it possibilities well beyond the specific control over the programmer, even though the programmer can add or take away or drastically change the program. The driver can drive slow or fast, can be careful or not, but he sometimes loses control, even though he has ultimate control, over the car, which can slide on the ice and kill him even though he didn't mean for it to do so. The AI machine is actually programmed to do what the human is not capable of doing, even though the human gets the machine to do it. That part of it that is out of the human's specific control at the time can do amazing calculations at amazing speeds and can make art.
  12. Btw I'm talking up the creative aspects of art, but this doesn't mean I don't care the art objects in themselves. I don't think art inheres in any object, and if I prefer a piece of driftwood to a sculpture, for example, then that's what I prefer and it doesn't matter to me who "made" either.
  13. Makes sense. And preferring a piece of driftwood doesn't make it art. The sculpture isn't art because it's better than or preferred to a piece of driftwood.

    I don't see art as a superlative.
  14. I see a parallel between art made by AI, and the monkey-selfie being discussed in Casual Photo Conversations. At what point will someone claim that the human artist or programmer does not own the copyright? Will the AI art be public domain?
  15. "Yes, and the programmability gives it possibilities well beyond the specific control over the programmer,"

    Well, a program's output need not be predictable, but (assuming no hardware errors) any non-deterministic behavior is explicitly programmed (by sampling the outside world, for example), every source of noise and each degree of freedom is accounted for. Programmers must control chaos, traditional artists surrender to it (if they're any good). The thing is, there's an author here. There's no driftcode.
    Last edited: Jul 27, 2017
  16. Norman 202

    Norman 202 i am the light

    oh-kay, supposing art is a manifestation of the soul and as our art has expanded (we've moved on from caveman art ) does that mean the soul has expanded. and is so, how far can it expand?
  17. Norman 202

    Norman 202 i am the light

    can it expand sufficiently to recognise that art and soul and humans are not joined at the hip? does the soul have free will, to associate itself with beasts, machines, germans?
  18. Norman 202

    Norman 202 i am the light

    I can, given my experience with chemical reactions in the brain :) and I can't believe there isn't a school of philosophy that agrees with me. But I can offer no proof so it's back to wikipedia for me.
  19. Norman, there is. Philosophy of Mind. A good starting point is Nagel's short paper, What It's Like to Be a Bat, which lays out a well-conceived and well-written defense of there being something more than what scientific materialism can address. Then, there's a collection of essays edited by Ted Honderich, I think called The Philosophy of Mind that presents both materialist and dualist positions. I studied this stuff about 15 years ago but imagine these articles are still relevant and may have been updated. Not much talk of souls, even in the non-materialist papers. Bible's always good for that. Read it in my twenties and some portions since then.
    Norman 202 likes this.
  20. Here's how I'd put it. Soul may be required for some people but not others to theorize about art. It's not necessary to make art, to experience art, to appreciate art, to hate it or to love it. Soul probably suits religious or faux religious dogmas and maybe some academic idealists. It is a concept that's been dealt with with in art and other endeavors a lot. So understanding it when it's addressed specifically might be helpful. But Monet can paint a water lily even though he has no soul and John and Jane can swoon over that water lily, discuss it, throw blood on it, or pay millions of dollars to own it even though they don't have souls. I can read The Divine Comedy and will understand it better if I know how the word "soul" has been used and what it means to Dante and others. I can do that even though I don't have a soul and even though I don't buy into the idea of souls as a reality. Plenty of people do it all the time, just as plenty of people of faith are bright enough to understand what agnosticism or atheism is as well as being feeling enough to feel something for art made by an atheist or agnostic if they're open enough even though they believe in souls.

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