For some years now, computer-generated artifacts have been flourishing, primarily those created by means of AI. While it was initially images and videos that caused a stir, there is increasing discussion about machine language models that are used to analyze and synthesize texts. Both contribute to the machine-assisted construction of reality. In the process, we are transforming not only our world but also ourselves: New forms of self-description are emerging. The book Selbstgespräche mit einer KI (Soliloquies with an AI) attempts to realize these developments in the confrontation with (executable) text, through analysis and reflection as well as through synthesis and poetry.
In collaboration of the human author and an individually constructed adaptive typewriter, “conversations” were created, which thematize and portray both authors, while also merging them with each other. Who contributed which textual components is often unknown (and perhaps uninteresting). Authorship is thematized on yet another level: As self-description becomes more and more externalized into machines, the authors and modes of writing of the subject (object) become increasingly unknown to the subject itself. In contrast, procedures of algorithmic text production are carried out in Selbstgespräche mit einer KI in order to better understand it, but also to be able to adapt it to one’s own needs. This process is documented and reflected in a “manual”. The “code” provides additional insight into the machine (and ultimately into the human author’s thinking). The “data set”, which is essential to the conversations, is also reflected upon and, in interaction with the other parts of the book, offers another level of self-description.
The book can be bought and read here.