What The Fuck Are We Going To Do About AI-Generated Celebrity Porn?

by Shelt Garner

I continue to grow ever more alarmed by the increase in AI-generated celebrity photos. I know there was something of a kerfuffle recently over some silly bad Taylor Swift “porn” that appeared on Twitter, but that’s nowhere near what we should be worried about going forward.

At the moment, AI-generated celebrity images are rather banal and easy to spot. What I see on my social media feed a lot these days is such imagines which usually only vaguely look like whatever celebrity they’re supposed to represent. An example of a picture that is supposed to be Margot Robbie is shown below.

An AI-generated photo of Margot Robbie.

The photo above at least attempts to replicate what Robbie actually looks like. Usually one of the big mistakes of AI-generated celebrity photos is they are clearly done in a way to show what men WISH the woman in question looked like. They’re usually a bit more curvy and symmetrical than the real deal which makes it easy to spot as a fake.

My concern is what happens in a few years (months?) when we get passed the “uncanny valley” and photorealistic images of celebrities come common place. I know because of the silliness involving Tay-Tay that there has been a move to pass some legislation, but the wheels of government move very, very slow compared to AI developments.

Add to this how many “unaligned” people want the right do do whatever the fuck they want with AI and it definitely seems as though we’re careening towards a very, very dark and rather surreal future. We really need to start to work on developing watermark technology that will allow the audience to distinguish between AI-Generated photos and the real thing.

While we’re on the subject of such things, another development I’ve noticed on the AI image front is women using AI filters on their faces while leaving the rest of their body unaltered. See below:

I find this rather surreal. But this is definitely a development to keep an eye on. It seems very possible that there may come a time when AI-filters are so good that the causal viewer won’t be able to discern that a phot has been altered. This could lead to some rather surreal developments on dating apps.

A Spoiler Free Review of The Movie ‘Civil War’

by Shelt Garner

I listened to Vanity Fair’s movie podcast “Little Gold Men” this afternoon before going to see the new movie Civil War and it was interesting how harsh they were on the film. I was really looking forward to the movie and for a beat or two I wondered if it was going to suck.

I went to see the movie tonight and there were a surprising number of people in the theatre.

Anyway, my top line reaction to the movie is it’s far better than the snooty people of the Little Gold Men podcast would have you believe. And, I must note, these are the same people who were enthralled with any number of gay rom coms that tanked over the last few years. So, I think that gives you some sense of how clued-in they are to the appetites of the general viewing audience.

I found the movie a serious, compelling tale about a serious subject. It was very violent, but what else do you expect from a movie called “Civil War.” And I can understand why bloodthirsty MAGA people might find the movie “boring” because it refuses to take a stance on who the “good guys” are.

There is some hint of who the POTUS is modeled after, given his policy objectives. But there’s a chance that this will fly over the heads of most MAGA people. Add to this the seemingly surreal decision to have California and Texas on the same side and it’s easy to imagine that MAGA people might grow frustrated that they aren’t able to see their dreams of dead liberals show on the big screen.

But there was a specific reason for taking such a “value free” approach to the politics presented in the movie — the moment you grounded the movie’s scenario in reality, it would be seen through a very brutal partisan lens that would have people on both sides pointing fingers.

In general, I really liked the movie. It was really good. And I could see a chance — if the movie strikes the zeitgeist in just the right way — that it might become popular enough that it begins to generate Oscar buzz.

In passing, I will note that a real civil war in the US would be a lot worse than what is portrayed in the movie. The lights were still on for the most part. There was no talk of using WMD anytime during the movie.

Anyway. I liked Civil War. I just hope I don’t have to live in starting in late 2024, early 2025.

Of AI & Music

by Shelt Garner

Things are moving rapidly when it comes to AI-generated music. There are now at least two services — Suno and Udio — that allow you to write a prompt that generates songs with lyrics.

It definitely seems as though we may be about to enter A New Age when it comes to pop music when such music, if it hits the zeitgeist just right, may become as popular as human-generated music.

And that doesn’t even begin to address the issue of the possibility that the estates of long-dead artists might license their audio “likeness” to AI companies so a zillian songs-in-the-style of The Rolling Stones, or The Beatles or whomever could be generated on the fly in an ad hoc way by millions of people around the globe.

This is obviously a ping from a future where AI takes over all forms of art. Most art will be AI generated to the point that it crowds out human-generated art. And I still think that it is inevitable that consumers will come to value human-generated art over AI-generated art, no matter the quality.

This would be a similar situation to what happens in the movie Blade Runner where the ownership of “real” animals is a big deal. As such, I could see live experiences ranging from live theatre to sports to music concerts all seeing a real uptick in their cultural value.

We may see a day soon where young would-be starlets go to Broadway instead of Hollywood to find fame and fortune because, lulz, Hollywood will just be a bunch of 1s and 0s.

I can’t predict the future, though, I don’t know for sure any such thing will happen. But it’s definitely a possibility.

Maybe We Need To Remake ‘Capricorn One’

by Shelt Garner

The moment I saw that Hollywood was making a movie about a fictional faking of the moon landing, I remembered the old movie Capricorn One. That movie involved the faking of a landing on Mars.

Given how Elon Musk is obsessed with that idea, it would make a lot of sense to make a movie about someone like Musk faking such an accomplishment. Such a reboot kind of writes itself.

It has to be noted how bonkers pop culture has become of late. People are flipping out about a fucking eclipse of all things. Everything is a conspiracy now or seen through a partisan lens to a ridiculous degree.

It really makes you wonder what the fuck is going to happen in 2025 should ding-dong Trump become POTUS again. I just don’t think any of us are pepared for how fucked up such an event would be on both a political and cultural basis. Things would get very, very dark — no eclipse needed.

‘R.I.P. Hollywood’

by Shelt Garner

Because of pure human greed, I do believe that there is a real risk that Hollywood as we know it may be about to be totally disrupted by generative AI. A lot of people seem blinded to the potential capability of generative AI while at the same time being so blinded by their love of human Hollywood that they miss how severe the disruption is about to be.

I can’t predict the future, so I don’t know for sure, but I do think that at some point in the future the very idea of a “movie” will change to the point that rather than one version of a movie that everyone watches, there may be millions of slightly different movies generated by AI.

Throw in the rise of VR and there’s a chance that we’ll all “play” our movies like video games in immersive environments.

I continue to believe that the key issue is how fast all of this is going to happen. It could boil down to just one severe recession. And I think there will be a lot of calls for carve outs to protect human jobs.

What’s more, in the end, the live experience will gain a huge amount of cultural value to the point that there will be a huge surge of interest in sports, live theatre and music concerts. There is even a chance that instead of going to Hollywood, young starlets will try to make it big on Broadway.

The First AI Generated Movie Might Be…A Historical Drama?

by Shelt Garner

Given the generative nature of AI these days, it would make a lot of sense if the first AI generated movie was a historical drama. All you would have to do is feed a bunch of photos from the 1860s into the AI and ta-da, you could bring those photos to life in the context of a movie.

At least, that’s what I would do.

I could totally see such an AI-generated drama being the Toy Story of the post-human Hollywood age. And the more modern the timeframe you wanted to depict, the more accurate you could make your movie.

I continue to believe that anyone who doesn’t think Hollywood is about to be disrupted in a severe, significant manner is a fool. It definitely seems as though it’s just a matter of time at the moment. The Toy Story of generative AI is going to come out soon enough and change everything.

Remember, I believe that soon enough the whole notion of movies will change because we will each get a personalized version of a movie generated by an our personal digital assistant who knows our every quirk really, really well.

Video: Mulling The Petite Singularity

Video: Idle Rambling About The State Of The Third Draft Of My First Novel

Well, If Nothing Else, I Won’t Embarrass Myself With This Novel

by Shelt Garner

Things are finally beginning to click with this novel. As I’m going through and rewriting many of the scenes of the third draft so I can produce something I can maybe get a manuscript consultant to read — if I can find the money — I’m finally, finally feeling confident that this novel won’t, if anything, embarrass me.

My dream is to write a novel as popular and as successful as Stieg Larsson’s The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo.

I can finally feel some peace about all the hard work I’ve done over the last few years with this project. A lot of why things are moving so fast now comes from how I have a stable outline. All I have to do is go through the outline and smooth out some of the rough edges while leaning into character.

I’m really beginning to use cause and effect on the scenes so they’re not just a series of scenes that move around constantly. There is some sense of a flow from scene to scene. This is why I really feel the Beta Release of the third draft will be good enough that it will feel like a professional novel.

My heroine as a sleeve tattoo similar to the one Megan Fox now sports, even though I thought of the idea first.

All systems are go for me to wrap this novel up around July 22 as I hope. When I finally do finish this novel, the real work begins. I’m at a total loss as to what I’m going to do when I start to query this novel. I’ve been developing and writing this novel in such a vacuum that I fear the transition into trying to sell this particular work could be extremely jarring.

But I’m prepared to fail — a lot. And I know the odds are against me big time. It will be like winning a creative lottery to get anywhere near my goal of being a published author anytime soon. Even if I stick the landing, I could be a lot closer to 60 than I am now by the time the book hits bookshelves and people can buy it

My heroine has the same phenotype as Corrie Yee.

And that doesn’t even begin to address the possibility of a political “Fourth Turning” happening or a technological “Petite Singularity.” But I have hope. I’m a peace one way or another.

I believe that when this process is over that I will have a finished novel that I can be proud of, regardless of any obstacles I may face to get it traditionally published.

I Finally Understand What My Novel Is About

by Shelt Garner

For a long time, I thought this novel was a murder mystery like Stieg Larsson’s The Girl Who Played With Fire. Because of this assumption, I spent months — years — spinning my wheels, struggling to figure out how to make the story work. It wasn’t until I realized that the first novel in this series is actually more foundational than that that things began to click.

My novel is about a part-time stripper who is obsessed with owning a community newspaper in rural Virginia.

This novel isn’t about a murder, it’s about one woman’s struggle to own a community newspaper. Throw in that the woman is a part-time stripper and a few people do die during the course of the story and you got yourself a pretty good shot at a novel that is interesting enough to actually get published the traditional way.

What’s more, this is meant to be part of a six or seven novel series that ends with a NEW series about a Lisbeth Salander-type woman. So, in a sense, my vision for these novels is you get to see how one Salander-type woman had such a fucked up youth that she would turn into someone you want to read a lot of books about.

Writing a novel as accessible and popular as Stieg Larsson’s The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo is my dream.

That’s the thing about Salander, from my point of view, the reason she was the way she was is she had a really fucked up upbringing. Had she had the opportunity have a normal youth, she might not have gone bonkers the way she did.

So, now that I understand the nature of this first novel in the series, I find myself dwelling seriously about how successful I will be when it comes to querying this novel. At the moment, I honestly don’t know.

I’ve never queried a novel and it could be that despite all my hard work that over the years that, lulz, I’m still not good enough. But I know I’ve accomplished one thing — I’ve written a novel that at least won’t embarrass me.