AI Takeover

When we talk of artificial intelligence (AI), often the first images that play in people’s minds are those of the technology that has run amok and gains sentience. Thereafter determining that humanity is obsolete and proceeds to eliminate our species off the face of the earth. Quite compelling stuff, and according to some top AI experts a possibility if we go charging forward recklessly without forethought of our actions.

I am one of those that fear that outcome, but hopeful that brighter minds that are working on this tech build in fail-safes to combat the malevolent robotic overlords of our science fiction and creates something more amicable to human life and society.

With that dystopian outlook hopefully quite a way into the future we can look at how AI is integrating with the current technology that we use every day. Most people are (or should be) aware that AI is at the heart of such technologies like the Amazon Alexa, Google Home, and Siri. Using deep learning and machine learning these are becoming more and more common in our lives but at a less than surface level.

While the possibilities for AI can be scary there are applications that are integrating this tech now that are not only unobtrusive but extremely helpful as well. In our corner of the creative tech world, a couple examples I found are in the Adobe creative software, implementing an AI called Adobe Sensei. While you can’t do anything with Sensei itself, it powers some very interesting features throughout the software lineup. For instance, in the video editing application Premiere Pro, there is a new AI-powered feature that allows you to create your video at a normal (widescreen) 16:9 aspect ratio but then apply the Auto Reframe effect to crop down your video into a variety of different video sizes used by the various social media platforms. The intelligent part of this effect is that it will automatically detect what/who your subject is and will make that the focus of the crop. Pretty nice and saves time too. Not only can you apply this on a clip by clip basis, but you can also use it on the entire video sequence.

Another instance of Adobe Sensei pops up in Photoshop. When you apply a Liquify effect onto an image with faces on it, the effect will automatically detect the face or faces in the picture and allow you to manipulate many aspects of a face, such as eye size, smile, face width, forehead and chin sliders, and more. Traditionally this sort of thing would have to be done manually and this new use of AI is another time saver since it gives you the tools to quickly and easily make many modifications with just a couple mouse clicks.

These applications of AI and others that are making their way into our software programs are a welcome step in the AI revolution and makes me hopeful that AI use will be more benign than some bleaker outlooks.