Do androids have dreams or do they only feed on ours?

AI and creative inspiration

“Robot Radio” low power FM station sign outside Meow Wolf art exhibition in Santa Fe, Texas.

Can computer technology “create”? I’ve been wrestling with that question a lot lately. Do AI’s really contain that precious thing called inspiration?

If not, will they? Ever?

My Robot – by Looper (Stuart David, co-founder of indie pop group Belle and Sebastian).

My old man brain shouts “No! Never.” And then I see or read a piece of AI “art” and I feel something.

Is it only pattern recognition tricking me?

Is it a bug in my programming?

At times I swear I’m picking up a signal, but is it live or is it Memorex?

“Black Sun, Dead Can Dance” – Courtesy of Airminded, an online creator who is exploring the possibilities of Art and has curated some really evocative images.

Did we put our ghost in the machine or do we only see our minds reflected? Are we giving dreams to machines or just giving them up?

I remember seeing a slide show in the ’70s, from a missionary on leave from Africa. Some of the slides showed traditionally-dressed people hiding their faces with their hands.

“Some of them hate having their pictures taken,” the missionary said. “They think the camera will steal their souls.”

That got a few titters from the congregation, of course. But I’m starting to wonder if the people in those photos are getting the last laugh. Could that be exactly what we’re doing as “modern” humans? Feeding our souls into a machine?

If we are will we ever get them back? If we don’t, will this thing we’ve made appreciate the gift?

Maybe those tribesmen should have been the missionaries? They might have been wiser than us.

Judas Priest – Metal Gods

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