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Exploring the limits of Artificial Intelligence: Can it create emotions and be creative?


Faced with the constant emergence of artificial intelligence, today we ask ourselves if it would be possible for an artificial intelligence to create emotions in a human and if it could be considered a form of creativity? In this study, we will explore the impact that this technology has on artistic domains and try to find out if it can approach the cognitive capacities particular to human processes that generate emotions.


Mathematics or creativity


Artificial intelligence (AI) now plays a vital role in our lives. AI tools are routinely integrated into almost every aspect of our digital existence: for example, voice recognition, online search optimization, and predictive data analysis. Even so, there is a considerable limit to what these technologies can accomplish, even as their ability to learn, analyze, and predict is constantly growing. But then, where do we draw the line?


Is AI only capable of mathematical simulations or can it be considered as a form of creativity, increasingly invited to participate in human artistic production? This paper will explore this question by offering an analysis of AI technologies and their evolution, highlighting some of the legal and ethical challenges we face.


Definition and current limitations of Artificial Intelligence


Artificial intelligence, according to the Websters Definition, is a "term that can refer to a computer system capable of performing activities that normally require human intervention." In practice, AI includes a wide range of specialized computer algorithms designed to perform complex tasks such as processing natural language, images, or videos. Typically, AI systems operate on the basis of data and information that is gathered from human actions and through the process called "machine learning." For example, an AI system can be trained by doing textual analysis to classify documents or make comments based on what it "sees" or reads in an image.


Although AI has made significant progress in recent years, it still has considerable limitations. First, current computer systems require a large amount of data to operate; if not provided in sufficient quantity, the quality of the results may be low. Second, the ability of AI systems to understand diverse contexts may still be limited. In particular, when testing these systems under dynamic or complex conditions (e.g., to recognize facial expressions or the possible consequences of an action), their ability to analyze and predict is greatly impaired.


Can AI create human emotions?


Emotions are a complex psychophysical state whose perception depends on very specific personal figures: for example, facial expressions, gestures and muscle movements. The question is therefore whether AI is capable of simulating these perceptions to the point where they evoke a kind of "empathy" in humans. A quality that is recognized worldwide and that allows humans to distinguish them from machines.


When it comes to facial expression recognition, AI has already made remarkable progress. Using neural network structures and other machine learning technologies, computer systems are now able to recognize a wide range of human feelings, from positive emotions (joy and anger) to negative emotions (fear and sadness). These systems can be customized to recognize specific facial expressions and, as a result, the percentage of accuracy is impressive. Although most systems now allow for easy recognition of feelings, the ability to simulate the same complicated feelings with a degree of nuance that would be recognized and understood by a human being is an otherwise more difficult task.


Can AI be creative and produce artistic works?


The idea that AI can create original works of art is not new, although it has recently been particularly debated. On the one hand, some proponents of this idea argue that except for the most trivial aesthetic aspects (e.g., formatting), technology can now create images and music based on complex programmed rules. On the other hand, there are some concerns about whether the use of AI technologies can provide a form of true human creativity, or whether it is simply robotic imitation.


However, as technology evolves and humans and machines make joint efforts, several interesting examples have emerged. GANS (Generative Adversarial Systems) calls, for example, can be used to create digital content that looks completely "original. Such systems work on the principle of the "iterative model": a computer algorithm produces an image or video from pre-programmed rules; then this image/video is analyzed by an artificial intelligence. Once the analysis is complete, another algorithm makes detailed computer adjustments, producing an image/video that is completely different from the first.


GANS have now been widely adopted in a variety of fields ranging from music to visual arts to screenwriting, and are now poised to replace programmers and artists in several creative processes. There are also a number of specialized AI tools that can convincingly edit images and even create works that would not have been possible without direct human intervention. For example, many digital software programs, such as AI photo editor, are designed to create images from scratch based on pre-programmed layout and colorization.


What is the ethical and legal challenge related to AI?


Although artificial intelligence technology now offers us incredible possibilities and opens the door to innovative creations, its commercialization also raises a number of legal questions. The main one is related to intellectual property: who is the true author of a work created by a computer system? If the work is entirely machine-generated, then should copyright be attributed to the engineer who built it or to the person who uses it?


Other issues are raised by the commercialization of artificial intelligence techniques. In some cases, it is possible that these technologies could be used to intentionally (or unintentionally) deceive consumers. For example, computer systems may be designed to sell "original" products when in fact they are generated entirely by computer processes. Another ethical challenge arises with the increasing development of technology: where is the real "consciousness" when a machine is able to communicate with a human? What responsibility should the operator (or manufacturer) of the machine assume?


What is the future potential of AI in artistic and human creation?


While there are concerns about the misuse or deception of AI technologies to create "fake" products, the fact remains that computer systems provide humans with an incredibly rich and varied reservoir of creative opportunities. Digital artists, programmers, and musicians can work together to create complex works that would not be possible without direct human intervention.


In the same vein, artificial intelligence systems also have the potential to greatly accelerate artistic production, as they are able to generate innovative ideas and integrate them into existing works more quickly. In this way, technological advances in artificial intelligence can help humans create and feel connected to works that would otherwise be impossible.


Yet we must remember that computer systems do not just happen. A programmer must work on the development of the system and an adequate source of data must be provided for the system to work properly. In addition, it is important that we apply the necessary rules to protect our rights and those of consumers and society in general.


You want to improve your communication, you are curious to know what AI could bring to your business... or not, let's get in touch to discuss your projects.


About the author

Philippe Rigault

Philippe Rigault is the founding President of the agency Autour de l'Image. He assists clients in the development and animation of their communication strategy, combining advice, creativity, mentoring and common sense. Autour de l'Image is a global communication agency that simplifies the life of entrepreneurs. It brings together all the communication and marketing skills needed to develop sales and brand awareness.

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