Here's a link to a new book by Jonah Lehrer called 'Imagine, How Creativity Works".
Thank you John, I will check it out.
Looks great, just ordered it. :+)
I just ordered it also
Here is a fun take on creativity.
Lots of ideas presented in the best way:
It was taken down from vimeo.
John Cleese talking about creativity.
The "fun" aspect of his subject matter relates well with SA use and "what if?"
Here's a few quotes from a review of Cleese's talk on creativity i read this morning i thought people might appreciate.
Cleese's model for creativity centers on the interplay of two modes of operating – open, where we take a wide-angle, abstract view of the problem and allow the mind to ponder possible solutions, and closed, where we zoom in on implementing a specific solution with narrow precision. In the 10 minute video, he stresses the role of the unconscious.
-Space ("You can't become playful, and therefore creative, if you're under your usual pressures.")
-Time ("It's not enough to create space; you have to create your space for a specific period of time.")
-Time ("Giving your mind as long as possible to come up with something original," and learning to tolerate the discomfort of pondering time and indecision.)
-Confidence ("Nothing will stop you being creative so effectively as the fear of making a mistake.")
Creativity is not a talent. It is a way of operating.
More food for thought on the nature of 'creativity' here.
Wow... Such a deep discussion for the most part. There are a lot of good critical thinkers about in here, and sorry for my issues building a movie brush John... lol. You are right of course about your average software user using software the level you were referring to when talking of adding learning abilities into SA.
There are however other ways that you could put learning of a sort into the evolver for example though. Since you often refer to music synthesis as analogous to your graphics synthesizer you might find this idea apropos. How about taking the concept Pandora uses to try and intelligently find music you will like. Allow a user to like or dislike a result and store this to a database either on the hard drive or maybe cloud based to build an even bigger overall database. Then take fuzzy logic like used in applications that that find duplicate images, and use it to start eliminating results that are within a certain range of visual similarity. Is it practical? Probably not with required storage space for all the images a person doesn't like, but technically feasible and it's a start to learning and self decision. Based on user input, sure.
Is that the same as a person who has created their own sense of esthetics and style? I don't know. Your average person is certainly not consciously aware of all the information they process or even all of the decisions they make based on the input. The conscious mind is just a small piece of the puzzle, yet it is all most of us have to work with. Is it true that creativity is what people don't know what to do and do it anyway? How is that even possible to know unless you can observe your unconscious thoughts to know what you know on the unconscious level as well as conscious? For most... the unconscious mind I believe is where creativity begins, but what causes it? Does a question start the process?
I think it might be slightly more basic than that. I think the key to creativity lives in three places. First,creativity can stem from need. There is a reason for the quote "Necessity is the mother of invention". A need is something I don't really know if a computer can really experience until or unless they become self aware. Secondly, I believe that creativity can stem from desire. Certainly, many a poet has waxed on dreaming of their desires, and perusing them. Third, I can say that determination will often prevail where others may fail. This is where the hard work or perspiration would certainly apply. Hard work alone does not creativity make, however. In order for determination to spawn creativity there needs to be a goal. Goals are determined by wants or needs, so that makes our nice little triangle. You might argue that a brute force program is analogous to determination, except that every action is predetermined, and it does not choose its' own goals or reach beyond it's static set of rules.
Being made of organic materials... we evolve in truth, not in concept alone. The cells that make up our bodies and minds are in constant flux. The neural pathways strengthen or weaken all the time adding an insane array of variables. Right now, my mind wasn't the same as it was 10 minutes ago, and neither is yours.
To presume it's possible to really quantify all the necessary variables and lay them into neat logical code at this stage of the game may be a little absurd. That is of course assuming we even know what we think we know. To keep the conversation mildly sane I won't dive into perception vs reality or theories of the holographic universe, nor string theory and the perceived behavior of quarks. Suffice it to say that after we learn enough about how the brain works... then we monitor some with machines from cradle to grave gathering and examining every bit of data acquired... maybe then we'd be ready to start creating something that could independently create back. As to whether the decision to do so would be wise or not is up in the air until we know what its' reaction to its' creators might be.
In terms of practicality, It's my opinion that software could be devised to somewhat mimic an idiot savant one day... possibly even before my death even assuming all the nifty life extension tech becomes available to Jo(sephine) public. I think there was some special I watched on TV once and I can't remember who to attribute the quote to, but it went something like "A savant can hit a target no one else can hit. A genius can hit a a target no one else can see."
But then again as the film of the same name put it "What the #$*! Do We (K)now!?".
For a look at a favorite bit of creativity, consider Andy Warhol walking out on stage boasting of this incredible work of art he's created and unveiled it by turning his podium upside down thereby claiming the world as his work of art.. placing it on a pedestal.
When you can teach a computer to be a stand up comedian with material of it's own devising, you'll have taught it creativity.
What can I say? I'm a little goofy
Regarding 'idiot savant', there's some research going on in Australia by Allan Snyder where they use magnetic stimulation of specific areas of the brain to temporarily shut down the neural activity in those regions. So you can temporarily experience being an autistic savant, with the goal of creative enhancement.
The aspect of Savant ability I meant to refer to is their often unusual accuracy or off the norm scale for performing known abilities or tasks... not necessarily their sometimes enhanced abstract thinking and creativity. I didn't know about that research though... I find that rather interesting... I'd be fascinated to discover the results of such experimentation.
Where computers can often exceed human abilities are in the areas of speed and accuracy due to their static logic driven nature and limited variables. Given erroneous data... they make very fast, accurate mistakes too, or rather they perform the error given them flawlessly with no ability to correct based on understood intent... spell checker's excluded... lol. The amount of data required for correcting like that with general everyday requests would be staggering.
I did read somewhere that there is research in nano-tech that suggested something along the lines of being able to store data in polarity of molecules of matter (I barely skimmed it). Potentially turning a literal block into a block of data I suppose.... or smart matter which I've read about in sci-fi novels. So maybe eventually data storage issues will be solved as all of our couches will have all research of string theory stored in them. Until I wake up in that sci-reality however there are certain issues that will be hard to solve or emulate given current limitations.