How ChatGPT is changing the world and how we will be saved through sports and games

Bert Wagendorp

Laurens Verhagen wrote an interesting article in this paper on Tuesday about the consequences of computer programs based on algorithms like ChatGPT and Midjourney: What do they mean for human creativity? And most importantly, what do they mean to humans? What is a human being if creativity—the ultimate expression of what it is to be human—can be captured in data and algorithms? The last sentence in Verhagen’s article was irritating: “It’s only the beginning.”

How long before you win a Libris with a novel by ChatGPT or some other self-learning computer program that turns into a book at breakneck speed? When will all the songs for the Eurovision Song Contest idiot show be made by an AI song generator – it can’t be that hard.

There are people who don’t see things moving so fast and who believe in the superiority of human creativity – their thesis is increasingly being undermined. Others argue that creativity has always been driven by data and algorithms, but we’re getting better and better at breaking down the corresponding formulas in our brains.

Creative algorithms will fundamentally change our world and our thinking about humans. so what? What if the data of the entire society were written down, art became at the push of a button, robots provided better diagnoses than doctors, political decisions were no longer electoral but data-driven and means of production automatically met all our needs – all developments that Yuval Harari has already outlined in his book gay deity And who is now suddenly approaching with frightening speed?

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And Then We End Up in Utopia is the optimistic answer of the American philosopher Bernard Sotes (1925-2007) in his classic book grasshopper From 1978, the book is indebted to the world famous Jay Ludens – The Man Who Plays – by Johan Huizinga. grasshopper He suddenly became more objective than ever.

grasshopper Written largely in the form of a Platonic dialogue between Grasshopper and his skeptical apprentice. It’s very funny, but no less dangerous than that. A skeptic is a hard worker who worries about the future and cares about survival – just like you and me. Grasshopper stands for the carefree human, who finds his true form in the game. No wonder, for Suits, the game is the ideal of human life, a return to one’s being, and Huizinga played the role of a human being. Suits see sport and play as a guiding principle for the future, as the metaphysics of leisure, humanity’s savior in a dehumanised world.

Good news for sports and game lovers. The slow potato won’t have to soon apologize for his stupid stare at the course, and can totally get him because he’s preoccupied with meaning. In the Suits utopia, the meaningless activity that gives meaning to our lives and our play — “the voluntary effort to overcome unnecessary obstacles” — will separate us from the machine.

All this seems empty, superficial and meaningless, but as the British philosopher David Papineau wrote: “Sport is as meaningless as anything else, but there is no sense in it.”

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