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There's Nothing Magical about Creativity

CJ Chilvers
CJ Chilvers
1 min read

I've been preaching about how creativity is really just problem solving. There's nothing magical about it. Give your brain enough room and it will be creative.

You could even schedule it. You should schedule it.

Neuroscientist Sam Harris has spent the past few years studying artificial intelligence and how it relates to the human mind. He would probably agree with me, but took it up a notch during a recent episode of his podcast:

“A.I. is already doing [creative things] in rudimentary ways...I don’t think there’s anything magical about our wetware as far as creativity goes. I think we’ll recognize it in our intelligence systems in so far as they become intelligent.”

That statement is a lot more substantial than it sounds at first. He's saying if you throw enough intelligence at a system at it can be creative.

Consider that for decades we've been telling people to focus on creativity to avoid having their jobs taken by automation. Now, it looks like automation will have that covered without breaking a sweat.

He doesn't commit to saying consciousness is merely a function of intelligence, but hints that may be the case as well.

The future is looking more interesting for sure. Not secure, but interesting.

I'd still place my bets on creative pursuits being the last to go professionally. But for hobbyist artists, I'd stress even more to be creative because it makes you happier and healthier. It shouldn't matter that an app may do what you do better and faster some day.

Any app today could write more legibly than I do, but I still write with a pen because it's more fun. I still take instant photos just because it's fun.

I think the "just because it's fun" thing will be the last thing A.I. attempts after conquering the professional world, and maybe then we'll get along just fine.