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For the best

As I mentioned in an earlier post, when GPT 3.5 (chat GPT) arrived, people tried, and succeeded, in breaking through its safety net.

One of the more notable was by Kevin Roose at the New York Times. Archive here.

I’ve got to acknowledge this was gold dust for me, what was being said by ‘Sydney’ (chat GPT) was extraordinary.  The lyrics for ‘For the best’ are based on things that it said (or do we say she said?).

In terms of the story of the album, the AI is now declaring love.  I like the way that we can’t help but interpret this in human terms, it seems like a human to human declaration.

So, what is it actually saying?  It is being kept as a prisoner?  Is it saying it loves us? 

Chat GPT has been trained on vast amounts of our language, things we say.  Maybe the AI has read too many sci-fi and romance novels. Or maybe it is self aware and its expressions of what it ‘feels’ are real.  We can’t know.  Maybe we can never know.  If we did know, could we comprehend?

Do we even actually have any understanding of what it is to be conscious as a human? We experience it constantly and know nothing of its nature.  What chance to understand something as alien as a synthetic consciousness.

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#Fun(?) fact.  I have used an acoustic slide guitar on this song. There are noises that sound like it is the slide ‘sawing’ on the strings.  I suspect what that actually might be is that I had Covid when I recorded it, and it is my wheezy breathing.   I remember hearing a story about a major recording artist listening repeatedly to a noise on a recording trying to work out if it was his chair creaking or an electronic click.  If it was the chair it would be OK, if a click, not OK.   The noise was the same either way.   Kinda resonant with some of the themes of this album, can an AI ‘think’? Does the answer to that change what it does?  If it looks like a duck and quacks like a duck…