AI + Entertainment: A tale of bridging two creativities


Published Online: 17th February 2019


Look at the image above.

What do you think about this artwork? Any clue how much does this cost? Hold your heart, my friend, as it was auctioned for just $432,500. You might be wondering if the painting is embellished with riches of all sorts but no, it’s the painter who attracted this huge price tag. This painting was created by an Artificial Intelligent agent.

I am currently pursuing MSc in Computer Science with a focus on Machine Learning. When I talk to my friends and family who are from a non-technical background about my interest, they think that I am into something “Star War”-ish, something new which is a potential threat to mankind (Well let’s not even go in that direction). But machine intelligence has been there for a long time with some early achievements dating back to 1950s. Then, why was it dormant for such a long time? The credit goes to the absence of the processing and storage capabilities that a computationally intensive area like Artificial Intelligence demands. Thankfully, the past few decades have seen a revolution in a manifold enhancement of these capabilities, giving a tremendous boost to innovation and exploration in AI.

 Growing up witnessing the magical realm of Disney, the mere thought of rendering life to inanimate objects has always thrilled me. What makes the notion further alluring is the promise of assisting and entertaining mankind through futuristic technologies, decked up with human-like intellect and creativity. This excitement fosters an inner desire to contribute toward a harmonious union of my two passions: Artificial Intelligence and Entertainment.

 You might presume; it’s all about games isn’t it? But frankly, its potential is endless. Let’s consider some scenarios. Suppose you are a celebrity and want to enhance your public interaction. Imagine a Facebook-based chatbot which mimics your personality. Let’s say if you are an actor, the bot uses your dialogues, or maybe even songs to orchestrate conversation with a user.

 

This image is from a chatbot I created which mimics Indian actor Amitabh Bachchan. Here the bot’s response is one of his movie dialogues & translates to “In relationship, I am your father. Name is Shahenshah.”
This image is from a chatbot I created which mimics Indian actor Amitabh Bachchan. Here the bot’s response is one of his movie dialogues & translates to “In relationship, I am your father. Name is Shahenshah.”

 

Let’s consider another situation. Picture yourself as a budding movie director who has a new script in hand. Won’t it be cool if a system studies that script and shares with you the emotional and personality profile of characters across the script, and how is the inter-relationship between each character changing with time? Such analysis will surely help to enhance the content creation process. Don’t you think so?

 I frequently encounter statements like “This sounds so much fun ,but it hardly impacts the public and has a very limited market”. A few days back I read this extract in a Quora article: “Entertainment provides the audience with a respite from labour or work. It provides a distraction and an emotional release from the day-to-day frustrations people amass. When the entertainment is with others, either via physical presence or affinity, people feel that they are part of a tribe or collective. They can experience a sense of belongingness. Entertainment creates emotional relief, social connection through shared experience, a sense of social and/or economic position and reinforces or challenges social norms and assumptions.” And, Artificial Intelligence can help make this experience more adaptive, personalized, reachable and potentially more creative. Adding to that, the advantage which comes with entertainment is its interdisciplinary application, especially in education. For example, you want to create a colouring book for a kindergarten student. Will you prefer giving her a generic book or a book which is based on her favourite cartoon character. AI is the key to attain this personalization.

 As we are slowly steadily heading towards General AI, days are not far when you will be enjoying freshly brewed content tailored around your taste. The future holds tremendous possibilities… it basically comes down to how you plan to tap it.

 

– Mayur Saxena

 

Image source: https://assets.bwbx.io/images/users/iqjWHBFdfxIU/iUjUAhrSxLvA/v0/1000x-1.jpg