A Teen Built An A.I. Bot That Can Spit Rhymes Like Kanye West
A favorite pastime of Kanye West's is talking about how great he is. No shade here—the man has, more than once, referred to himself as an omnipotent being. We'd be curious hear Mr. West's thoughts on Robbie Barrat, the 17-year-old who taught an artificial intelligence to spit rhymes just like Yeezy. Now the bot can even create original lyrics. Sorry, 'Ye.
Don't Act Like I Never Programmed Ya
West Virginia teen Robbie Barrat is a member of his school's computer programming club. As a challenge from his fellow club members, Barrat tasked himself with creating an A.I. that could perform a task better than a human. His deadline was the following meeting.
What did Barrat do? He created a rapping neural network that could mimic the stylings of Kanye West. Barrat wrote most of the original code for the bot in an afternoon, and spent the next few days optimizing the results. At first, the A.I. was just blurting out nonsense. Barrat made tweaks that eventually got the bot spitting out not just Kanye-written lines, but original rap lyrics. Here's a sample:
They steal your whole sound, that's a Real World Challenge
You an addict of cheating but I took the charge
Stop running up my money tall, height advantage
Ohhhhh, ohhhh; oh you too much to handle in one package
According to Quartz, "The most current iteration is trained on 6,000 Kanye West lines and can now generate speech that raps the words written by the A.I., complete with semi-appropriate pauses." Not bad for a kid growing up in rural West Virginia who trained himself on open-source software. Hear a track written by his neural network below (warning: it includes some explicit language).
What Job Security?
If a teenager in rural America can train a computer in less than a week to be its own version of Kanye West, what does that mean for the potential of A.I. to take jobs? Not only is it likely that robot overlords will soon take over the world our jobs, it's basically expected at this point. Statistics predict that 47% of all U.S. jobs will be occupied by machines within the next two decades. Heck, A.I. is even creating A.I. better than humans can.
Though Barrat successfully made a neural network Yeezy, it's a far cry from the real thing. A.I. is capable of tackling creativity, but it still needs a lot of work. When A.I. does catch up, though, hopefully we'll be prepared. Elon Musk is way ahead of us there (like usual) and advocating for universal basic income. Getting a steady stream of cash while robots do all the work sounds pretty sweet. See? The future may not be as scary as it seems.
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