Meet Loab: The Scary Face The Internet Named Its First AI Art Cryptid


An AI art enthusiast has come across a creepy, recurring image, now known as Loab, that’s probably easier to create than you’d expect (or want). The Internet has now dubbed Loab the first AI art cryptid.

Artificial intelligence has come a long way since its conception by Alan Turing in the 1950s. In short, AI machines are programmed to mimic, and in some cases learn and improve upon, human intelligence to perform predetermined tasks. Artificial intelligence is a cornerstone of our technology-driven modern lives, and in recent times it has begun to make its impact in the artistic realm.

Scientists have created bespoke AI programs that can take cues from humans – often in the form of plain text or images – and use them as inspiration to create art. Often generated on a computer, these images are chaotically random and surreal in nature, and have sometimes been known to veer into the realms of the nightmarish and creepy.

Enter Loab. Earlier this year, Twitter user Supercomposite claimed to have created an artificially intelligent woman – they named Loab – that “tracks every photo she touches”.

Loab’s alleged origins were innocent enough—Supercomposite simply asked the AI ​​to create an image of Marlon Brando. To do this, they introduced what is known as a negatively weighted query, which causes the program to generate the opposite pole of what it perceives as its subject.

In this case, they used the command ‘Brando::-1’ and unexpectedly created a strange logo depicting a skyline and the letters ‘DIGITA PNTICS’. Curiosity got the best of the Supercomposite, which returned the letters to the AI ​​as another negative clue, wondering if it would show them a picture of Marlon Brando.

In return, the program apparently returned Loab’s first images.

The sudden appearance of this distorted individual was creepy enough on its own, but according to Supercomposite, things got weirder from there. They decided to combine one of Loab’s drawings by a friend with another, depicting a glass tunnel surrounded by angels.

The results are grotesque – Supercomposite and other AI artists say that something about Loab’s image makes art creation tools cringe. We won’t post more intense images in this story, but be warned that the associated Twitter thread contains images that may be offensive to some.

“Through some kind of extraordinary statistical accident, something about this woman is bordering on extremely bloody and gruesome visions in the spread of artificial intelligence’s world knowledge.” Supercomposite said on Twitter detailing Loab’s emergence.

What’s more, Supercomposite Loab says it’s unexpectedly durable, just when you’d expect multiple iterations of the combined images to start showing something new. In a Twitter thread, they explain that almost all subsequent hints involving Loab have featured him as a prominent, recognizable figure at the center of the disturbing and often bloody scenes he lived through.

Apparently, the AI ​​was able to “grab the idea of ​​Loab so well” that it continued to carry images for generations – even reappearing in later images after disappearing.

Loab’s persistence and general creepiness caused one person to dub it “the first cryptid of cryptid” (a term in machine learning that refers to the space between input and output), and the Internet has even created fan art of him, dubbing him everything from hero to demon. digital art.

There’s some debate as to whether this is a legitimate quirk of an AI art program or a cleverly disguised creep pie – although Supercomposite and their friends have. posted chat logs It shows that Loab was discussed privately in April of this year.

Whatever the truth of Loab’s origins, he’s now trending on Twitter and sparking off-topic discussions on such wide-ranging topics as machine learning bias and the validity of AI art — as if we’ll see a follow-up to it. Internet for a while.

Thumbnail image credit: Supercomposite





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