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Sat Aug 26, 2023, 01:45 PM

Artificial stupidity and me: If AI can do this to my book, what will it do in an actual war? (Salon)

https://www.salon.com/2023/08/26/artificial-stupidity-and-me-if-ai-can-do-this-to-my-book-what-will-it-do-in-an-actual-war/

Opinion piece by Norman Solomon, who says he was initially "a bit flattered" to find a study guide for his new book being sold online, and out of curiosity bought a copy. He doesn't give a link for that, but I'm guessing it MIGHT be the one still listed on Amazon's Singapore website, though it's Currently Unavailable there. https://www.amazon.sg/Summary-Workbook-War-Made-Invisible/dp/B0C7T5W8F8 . It's by an author who published a lot of books in a very short time, all also now listed as Currently Unavailable. https://www.amazon.sg/s?i=stripbooks&rh=p_27%3AJoseph+Phoneix . So apparently AI-written and being yanked from Amazon's websites, though not off the one in Singapore yet.

Btw, I am not endorsing Norman Solomon's opinions on all subjects. I want you to see how AI mangled his book. And his point about AI and war is valid.

-snip-

The thin booklet got off to a reasonable enough start, explaining with its first sentence, "The U.S. media coverage that makes it easier to sell wars to the public, as well as the often-hidden cost of civilian casualties from errant U.S. attacks, are all harshly criticized by journalist Solomon." That wasn't a bad summing-up of my book.

But the study guide's second sentence was not nearly as good: "He guarantees that when Russia designated Ukrainian communities during the new attack, the U.S. media was everyone available and jumping into action with compassionate, piercing revealing." Rereading that sentence a few times didn't improve it. I began to worry.

-snip-

The computer-programmed assaults on the English language escalated. And so the "war on terror" became the "battle on dread." A key source of meticulous research that I cite in my book, the Costs of War project at Brown University, became "the Expenses of War project at Earthy Colored College."

At one point, my book's actual title "War Made Invisible" somehow became "War Caused Imperceptible." But the laughable malapropisms provided by artificial intelligence became more serious matters when I saw several dozen words forming badly mangled phrases all attributed to me inside quotation marks. I could imagine bleary-eyed students cramming on the night before a test or a term-paper deadline, reading the ostensible quotes and thinking that the author of my book must be an idiot.

-snip-



It's pathetic, and it's funny, but it's pretty typical of how badly generative AI can mess things up.

And it's a problem even with a study guide.

Solomon points out that with AI, "no matter how sophisticated it might seem, the consequences in war are apt to be horrific."

He refers to this recent Pentagon announcement, which I posted about: https://www.democraticunderground.com/100218175847

Another post on the risks: https://www.democraticunderground.com/100218180017

Solomon's right to be worried.

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Reply Artificial stupidity and me: If AI can do this to my book, what will it do in an actual war? (Salon) (Original post)
highplainsdem Aug 26 OP
JanMichael Aug 26 #1
BannonsLiver Aug 26 #2
highplainsdem Aug 26 #3

Response to highplainsdem (Original post)

Sat Aug 26, 2023, 02:10 PM

1. Well for existing for about 6 months it's doing pretty good.

Try again in a few years and I would bet it will be better. Not a good thing but it will happen.

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Response to highplainsdem (Original post)

Sat Aug 26, 2023, 03:00 PM

2. It all comes down to Skynet and seeing Terminator one too many times.

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Response to BannonsLiver (Reply #2)

Sat Aug 26, 2023, 03:17 PM

3. LOL! Glad to see you add a wink this time.

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