Demo: How computers are learning to be creative

What’s the relationship between perception & creativity?

In this fascinating TED talk, Google’s Blaise Agüera y Arcas talks about everything from the structure of the brain to how the inflow of data can be reversed to synthesize really trippy imagery. Maybe if I watch it a dozen more times I’ll start to grok what’s happening here—but in the meantime, trust me, it’s well worth watching at least once:

We’re on the edge of a new frontier in art and creativity — and it’s not human. Blaise Agüera y Arcas, principal scientist at Google, works with deep neural networks for machine perception and distributed learning. In this captivating demo, he shows how neural nets trained to recognize images can be run in reverse, to generate them. The results: spectacular, hallucinatory collages (and poems!) that defy categorization. “Perception and creativity are very intimately connected,” Agüera y Arcas says. “Any creature, any being that is able to do perceptual acts is also able to create.”



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