So it’s come to this. ScarJo (aka Avenger Black Widow) is in a fight against OpenAI over the alleged use of a voice similar to hers or possibly even trained on her voice. It is quite literally Avengers versus AI. So what questions does this bring up? The training corpus for AI LLMs has been under some scrutiny, but it is still unclear what is considered fair use. A human can mimic ScarJo’s voice. Does that make it unlawful for that person to perform and profit from that ability? Does that performer need permission to do so? Does being able to do it easily and at mass scale make a difference? Or was it that OpenAI seemed to want to intentionally use a voice similar to ScarJo’s and even when they could not obtain consent, went ahead with a voice similar to hers? Is that a violation? Who knows.

What I find interesting is that they are trying to create something inspired by the movie, “Her”. An AI that can form relationships with people. This raises so many questions. Is the AI sentient? If it thinks it is sentient is it really? How can we tell if it thinks it is sentient versus is it just repeating words that follow the human pattern that trick us into thinking it is sentient? If it is just repeating words, how is that different from a human growing up and learning words and behavior and reacting? What is it like for a human to have a relationship with an AI? How is it different from a human to human relationship?

In a HumanXHuman relationship, both people interact and grow and change, moreso in a close relationship such as family or close friends. In a HumanXAI relationship, does the AI change and grow? It is able to gain new input from the environment and from the human. Does that constitute growth? Is that AI able to come to conclusions and realizations about the relationship on its own? or with some level of guidance? Does the AI have an equivalent of human feelings or emotions? Does mimicking those emotions count? When a human has emotions and reacts, is the human mimicking learned behavior? Are these emotions based on environmental input triggering biological responses in the form of hormone release? Is there anything more to that? If that is it, then is there a AI or robot equivalent?

I do think there are things us that make us truly unique and distinct from AI machines. But the lines are blurring. Being human used to be determined by my ability to pick which pictures contained traffic lights in them. Now that AI can do this what’s left? :D