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The Artistic Side of Machine Learning

The power of Artificial Intelligence is still largely untapped, but every so often, modern science offers us glimpses of its true potential. This past July at the Galerie Oberkampf in Paris, visitors to the “You Can’t Know My Mind” exhibition were confronted with a laptop and an empty chair. If they chose, they could sit down and have their portrait painted. The catch, though, was that it’d be planned and executed entirely by an artificial intelligence program called The Painting Fool.

Painting Fool’s greatest strength is the fact that it can learn and improve. Each time it fails to meet its own expectations, it assesses what went wrong and uses that knowledge in future creative decisions. “It did about 100 portraits, and by the end of the week, it knew, for instance, that pencils are not good for vibrant paintings, but they are good for making bleak and dreary ones,” says Simon Colton, the British computer scientist behind the program. “It reflected, it learned, and by the end, it was doing things that I hadn’t programmed it to do.” Read entire article here>