Neural networks paint an ambiguous future for the metaverse

Over the past 12 months, we have witnessed the rapid development of neural networks. Programs that generate images from a text query or combine graphic objects have gained particular popularity.

This technology is actively used in the metaverses as well.. Earlier this year, Mona released an AI material designer that allows you to create textures for objects without using code.. The company's CEO told The Block:

“We are actively working on the creation and implementation of such tools, and are not too far from the fact that users can generate assets and entire worlds using artificial intelligence inside Mona.”

However, AI art is not to everyone's taste.. So, the Chinese government actually banned the creation of content generated by neural networks without watermarks.. And Adobe began selling AI-generated photos as stock images, sparking outrage among artists.. According to critics, revolutionary technologies can leave artists without income.

Neural networks could make the metaverse a more dangerous place

As people spend more and more time online, so too will the number of cases of identity theft.. Therefore, one of the main concerns associated with the use of AI concerns the manipulation of photographs.

To illustrate the capabilities of a neural network, technology magazine Ars Technica created a fictitious person based on seven photographs of a volunteer.. Even this small amount of data was enough to generate a series of compromising shots – in pornographic style, in military uniform and orange prison overalls.. A larger dataset or advanced AI could create many more incriminating images.

An even bigger problem is video. As platforms like TikTok have exploded in popularity in recent years, user-generated video content is in danger of becoming a huge database for scammers.

The creators of the metaverses will have to work hard to ensure that this problem does not get worse in AI-controlled virtual worlds.

Artificial intelligence vs artists

The creative community is seriously concerned that neural networks can affect the income and career of artists. Well-known artists are especially dissatisfied with the introduction of AI, for example, Polish science fiction artist Greg Rutkowski. His recognizable style has been used in various games including Dungeons & Dragons, Sony's Horizon Forbidden West, Ubisoft's Anno, and Magic: The Gathering.

In September, he told Technology Review magazine that his work is often used to create images in AI generators..

“It's only been a month. And what will happen in a year? I may not be able to find my work there, because the entire Internet will be flooded with art created by neural networks.. It's very worrisome.”

Another emerging area of the metaverse economy is digital fashion.. Among the brands that actively use non-fungible tokens (NFT) are Burberry, Givenchy, Louis Vuitton and Prada. In May, a virtual Gucci bag sold for more than the physical item.

Don Gossen, founder and CEO of Nevermined AG, believes there is a middle ground where big names can still be an inspiration or lead the way.

“In practice, this can be reminiscent of the Warhol factory, where the artist controls the “workers” who create products in the image and likeness of the original.. This requires complete transparency of the creation cycle, from inspiration to production and sale.. And each contribution and participant must be registered and properly attributed in the value chain,” he comments.

Neural networks stimulate the creativity of users of the metaverse

Kinetix co-founder and CEO Yassin Tahi believes that creating content using neural networks should not be looked down upon.. According to him, AI is becoming the operating system on which the metaverses will be built.

“Generative AI is an incredible opportunity for the metaverses. They will promote acceptance and engagement in virtual worlds. The benefit is two-fold: professionals can iterate and create new experiences faster, and users can expand their skills and become virtual creators.”

Source: Decentraland

Others believe that AI generators will help improve the user experience in the metaverse.

“AI-generated images can be used to create more realistic and immersive virtual environments,” says Sam Hamilton, creative director at the Decentraland Foundation..

This August, Decentraland hosted its own Metaverse Arts Week.. The event featured AI-modeled buildings, neural network-written literary works, and even software-generated marketing visuals.


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