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UC Connect: What does AI mean for the entertainment industries?

Generative Artificial Intelligence (AI) is the latest technological craze – enabling computers to create text, images, audio, and even video in mere seconds from just a short description of what the user wants.

However, like all disruptive technological developments, Generative AI has the potential to cause great harm, according to an expert in the field of game design. Associate Professor Adrian Clark is a lecturer in the University of Canterbury’s School of Product Design who describes himself as “equal parts fascinated and terrified by Generative AI”.

As the technology has improved, the results are becoming increasingly indistinguishable from real media or artistic works created by humans, allowing even the most artistically challenged person to bring their creative ideas to life.

“We’ve seen news stories of people using ChatGPT to cheat on school assignments and DeepFakes used to spread political disinformation and propaganda, but with Generative AI’s intrinsic creative focus the entertainment industries have perhaps the most to lose,” Dr Clark says. These concerns recently reached boiling point, culminating in 2023 with strikes by the Writers’ Guild of America and the Screen Actors’ Guild, both of which were calling for limits in the use of generative AI in their industries.

In his free UC Tauhere Connect public lecture, on Wednesday 1 May he will explore the subject: What does AI mean for the entertainment industries?

“In this talk, we'll be looking at Generative AI, how it works, what it can do, where it might be heading, and what this all means for the entertainment industries,” Dr Clark says. “We may be standing on the precipice of a new golden age of entertainment and storytelling, or perhaps Pandora’s box been inadvertently opened – never to be closed again.”

About the speaker

Associate Professor Adrian Clark is a lecturer in the University of Canterbury’s School of Product Design, where he teaches Game Design and

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