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Links for 2023-03-30

  • AI and the American Smile. How AI misrepresents culture through a facial expression

    There are 18 images in the Reddit slideshow [a series of Midjourney-generated images of “selfies through history”] and they all feature the same recurring composition and facial expression. For some, this sequence of smiling faces elicits a sense of warmth and joyousness, comprising a visual narrative of some sort of shared humanity […] But what immediately jumped out at me is that these AI-generated images were beaming a secret message hidden in plain sight. A steganographic deception within the pixels, perfectly legible to your brain yet without the conscious awareness that it’s being conned. Like other AI “hallucinations,” these algorithmic extrusions were telling a made up story with a straight face — or, as the story turns out, with a lying smile. […] How we smile, when we smile, why we smile, and what it means is deeply culturally contextual.

    (tags: ai america culture photography midjourney smiling smiles context history)

  • Heat pump myths

    “Social media and newspapers are flooded with myths about heat pumps. Let’s take them one by one in this post.”

    (tags: myths mythbusting heat-pumps heating house home)

  • Belgian man dies by suicide following exchanges with chatbot

    Grim. This is the downside of LLM-based chatbots with ineffective guardrails against toxic output.

    “Without these conversations with the chatbot, my husband would still be here,” the man’s widow has said, according to La Libre. She and her late husband were both in their thirties, lived a comfortable life and had two young children. However, about two years ago, the first signs of trouble started to appear. The man became very eco-anxious and found refuge with ELIZA, the name given to a chatbot that uses GPT-J, an open-source artificial intelligence language model developed by EleutherAI. After six weeks of intensive exchanges, he took his own life.
    There’s a transcript of the last conversation with the bot here: .

    (tags: bots chatbots ai gpt gpt-j grim future grim-meathook-future)

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