CLIENT: Meatspace Press
ROLE: Graphic design with John Philip Sage and Roxy Zeiher
A book designed with the help of an artificial intelligence, edited by Frederike Kaltheuner.
Taking an optimistic standpoint of AI abundance, the book design is a semi-fiction, a staged and micromanaged use of a GAN (Generative Adversarial Network), where two neural networks contest with each other in order to generate visual output. The collaborating AI has informed, but also constrained the possibilities
The design of this book explores the use of artificial intelligence to conceptualise its main visual elements. From an optimistic standpoint of AI abundance, the book design is a semi-fiction, a staged and micromanaged use of a GAN (Generative Adversarial Network), an unsupervised machine learning framework, where two neural networks contest with each other in order to generate visual output. Stretching the narrative, this book could be framed as a/the (first) book designed by an AI. In this scenario, the collaborating AI (more like the AI-as-head-of-design-that-doesn’t-know-how-to-design), has informed, but also constrained the possibilities to work visually with the pages.
MetaGAN v.3 Layouts
The dataset used to produce the compositions is a collection of book scans. The purpose of an image GAN is to create new instances by detecting, deconstructing and subsequently reconstructing existing patterns to create speculations about continuations. Reusing existing layout materials, conceived by human creativity, opens up the discussion of AI creativity. The outcomes, which could be perceived as surprising, original and novel, are however subject to human selection and valuation. In training the MetaGAN, the dissimilarity of the data points, in combination with the small size of the dataset (200 images), led to the idiosyncrasy of overfitting. An overfitted model generates outcomes ‘that correspond too closely or exactly to a particular set of data, and may therefore fail to fit additional data or predict future observations reliably’(2).
AI type results
These AI letterings are results of a GAN using a dataset containing logos from various AI related brands (or belonging to Anguilla, whose country code top-level domain is ‘.ai’). The use of these characters is indeed automated in the design of the book, but it is done using GREP styles.
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