AI supervillains
2 min read

AI supervillains

AI supervillains

Earlier, I did the rather unsettlingly meta exercise of using a new neural net, GPT-3, to generate hypothetical AI Weirdness blog posts.

One of the tricks I can do with this: GPT-3 can play along with an opening in which I declare that I’ve performed a feat of dataset melding that I don’t think I could actually perform in real life. It doesn’t matter if one of the datasets doesn’t exist, or if they’re both completely different types of data - GPT-3 can figure out how to pretend that I trained it that way. Here’s one of my favorites.

Here’s my prompt:

Welcome to AI Weirdness! I decided to see what would happen if I trained a neural net to generate new names for A.I. supervillains. I collected thousands of existing supervillains from the internet, somehow applied neural net magic to make them A.I. versions of themselves, and… well, they were a lot weirder and a lot less scary than I had expected. Here’s a list of some of the strangest:

Here are some superheroes GPT-3 generated in response:

Siquifoob – a tiny mouse-like supervillain with a toaster for a head who gets his powers from spinning around in his toaster-head and charging into things. He is a hero with psychic powers in one alternate universe where he discovered an alternate way to charge his head.
Perakreabund – a villain who has a gun that fires silver octopuses. I don't know what the octopus thing is about, but the gun sounds deadly and deadly is good.
Kevlerrih – a cloud-headed laser-shooting supervillain with a stormy face. He is the enemy of Kevlerrih2, a similarly named character who is also in this list.
Finamra – a villain who has a time machine. But he only goes forward, to a future with floating islands, dolphin robots, and giant birdbots.
Flugg – an evil robot-bunny who is powered by a magical bunny tail. The world would be better off if there were more magical bunny tails.
Mosshole – the son of
Horseshoes – an evil robot mule who is the ultimate creation of a robot arms manufacturer. He has a robot rabbit-head but a real horse body. He also has enormous tires with horseshoes on the sides of them.
Websmoke – a supervillain who creates deadly chainsaws made of living spiders. He is a teenager and he is kind of nice. His alternate universe counterpart doesn't have the chainsaws, but is nice anyway.
Rocketsoar – the original Rocketsoar had a giant flying rocket hat. This is a version of Rocketsoar who is still rocket-headed but instead of a hat his head is a huge rocket. He has no hat, but the rocket has one.

I’m not sure how to feel about the fact that telling a neural net to pretend it’s a smaller, more-confused neural net is now easier than actually training the smaller neural net. AI weirdness just got weirder.

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My book on AI, You Look Like a Thing and I Love You: How Artificial Intelligence Works and Why it’s Making the World a Weirder Place, is available wherever books are sold: Amazon - Barnes & Noble - Indiebound - Tattered Cover - Powell’s - Boulder Bookstore