How AI Helps Non-Artists Shape Virtual Realities

The collaborative potential of AI in these virtual spaces is immense. Users are not merely players but creators who contribute to the lore and economy of these worlds.

by Faruk Imamovic
How AI Helps Non-Artists Shape Virtual Realities
© Getty Images/Johannes Simon

The collaborative potential of AI in these virtual spaces is immense. Users are not merely players but creators who contribute to the lore and economy of these worlds. Geoff McCabe, a significant player in the comic book and game industry, sees a parallel between this user-driven creation model and iconic franchises like Star Wars.

His NFT comic "Starblind," set within the Alien Worlds universe, exemplifies how creators can monetize their contributions through blockchain technology. This model represents a seismic shift in how content is produced and monetized, providing a platform for extensive community engagement and creative output.

The integration of AI doesn't stop at content creation. Alien Worlds utilizes an AI-driven Large Lore Model (Lynx) to maintain a cohesive narrative across its vast digital landscape, managed via GitHub and powered by input from 6,000 token voters.

However, the transition from concept to full realization remains gradual. While the idea of a user-generated universe is compelling, the execution is complex and still in its early stages. Rose candidly shares that they are still exploring various ways to use AI effectively to ensure consistency and quality in the game's expanding universe.

To participate in this groundbreaking venture, enthusiasts can engage through the platform or the iOS app Battlefleet Armageddon, promising a unique blend of gaming, creation, and economic activity.

Bridging Futures: AI and Cryptocurrency

In a broader context, the similarities between AI and cryptocurrency are not lost on industry experts.

DeepMind CEO Demis Hassabis points out that both sectors are shrouded in hype which sometimes obscures the genuine advancements and potential pitfalls alike. His concerns reflect a cautious optimism that underscores the revolutionary yet volatile nature of these technologies.

A prime example of this tumult is Amazon's "Just Walk Out" technology. Initially celebrated as a breakthrough in retail, it faced setbacks when it was revealed that a significant portion of transactions still required manual processing, highlighting the challenges of implementing AI in real-world settings.

The Promises and Perils of AI

Despite these challenges, AI continues to make remarkable strides across various sectors. From healthcare, where AI tools like Mia are diagnosing conditions such as breast cancer with astonishing accuracy, to the food industry, where AI is used to enhance the flavor profiles of beers, the potential of AI to improve lives is undeniable.

Yet, as with all technological revolutions, the path forward is fraught with both opportunity and obstacle. Société Générale’s chief global strategist, Albert Edwards, expresses skepticism, comparing the current AI investment surge to the tech bubble of the late 1990s.

His cautionary stance reminds us that while the promise of AI is vast, the road to its full realization is still uncertain. For enthusiasts and skeptics alike, the unfolding narrative of AI will be one of the most compelling to watch.

As we stand on the cusp of potentially transformative changes, the blend of AI and user creativity in projects like Alien Worlds serves as a promising glimpse into a future where technology and human ingenuity converge to create entirely new experiences and opportunities.

How AI Helps Non-Artists Shape Virtual Realities© Getty Images/Andrea Verdelli

Expanding Horizons: AI's Role Across Industries

Healthcare: AI as a Lifesaver

The medical field has been one of the most significant beneficiaries of AI technology.

Last year, AI Eye reported on an MIT team that utilized AI to discover the first new antibiotic in over six decades, targeting the superbug MRSA. This groundbreaking achievement was recently followed by another remarkable development: the creation of "SyntheMol." This generative AI model designs novel compounds that are easier to synthesize, targeting a range of pathogens including the hospital-acquired Acinetobacter baumannii.

Out of nearly 30 billion molecules analyzed, AI identified six new molecules with promising antibacterial properties. Further illustrating AI's potential in healthcare, a tool named Mia was tested on 10,000 mammograms by NHS doctors and AI, revealing its superior diagnostic capabilities.

Mia successfully identified all symptomatic tests and discovered 11 early-stage cancers that had been overlooked by human doctors. Such advancements underscore AI’s critical role in enhancing diagnostic accuracy and potentially saving lives.

Culinary Science: Enhancing Flavors with AI

Beyond healthcare, AI's influence extends into less expected realms such as the culinary arts. Researchers from KU Leuven University in Belgium have utilized AI to analyze the chemical properties of 250 different beers, correlating their findings with both professional and amateur taste reviews.

Their study resulted in a method to improve the taste of any beer, validated by a unanimous approval from tasters. This novel application of AI in food science promises not only to enhance consumer products but also to revolutionize how flavor development is approached.

Financial Sector: AI and Economic Speculations

The financial industry is also experiencing the transformative effects of AI, albeit with mixed receptions. Albert Edwards from Société Générale has voiced concerns about the current surge in AI-driven investments, likening it to the tech bubble of the late 1990s.

While AI promises to revolutionize various sectors, there is a growing skepticism over whether it can sustain the high market valuations it has helped drive. This skepticism is mirrored in the broader narrative surrounding AI and cryptocurrency—both heralded for their potential yet scrutinized for their volatile nature.

Challenges and Ethical Considerations

As AI continues to permeate various sectors, it raises significant ethical and practical challenges. The reliability of AI systems remains a critical issue, highlighted by incidents such as Amazon's "Just Walk Out" technology.

While promising to streamline retail operations, it faced setbacks due to its reliance on human contractors to process transactions. Such challenges emphasize the need for ongoing improvements in AI's accuracy and dependability.

Moreover, the impact of AI on social structures, such as the potential widening of the gender pay gap, cannot be overlooked. A survey by KPMG revealed that while a significant portion of young men are interested in AI, fewer young women express similar interest or understanding.

This disparity points to broader societal implications that must be addressed to ensure equitable benefits from AI advancements.