People wonder about what it would be like if a super-intelligent AI decided to place all of humanity in a realistic simulation. I wonder what it would be like if the simulation were built by today’s AI instead - whose computing power is somewhere around the level of an earthworm’s.
Specifically, what would the pies be like?
In 2017 and 2018 I gave increasingly powerful neural networks about 2000 names of existing pie recipes, and their imitations included Caribou Meringue, Mur’s Tartless Tart, and Cromberry Yaas.
But there are now even more advanced neural nets, including GPT-2, many times larger and pretrained on millions of pages from the internet. When I used gpt-2-simple to train the smallest version of GPT-2 (145M) on the list of pies, even it was able to come up with plausible (and highly repetitive) pies, many copied from the list I gave it. I can’t blame it for being a smartass and giving me the pies right back - technically this is a perfect solution to its task of “name some pies”.
I have ways of messing with the neural net, however. One thing I can do is increase the chaos level of the text it’s generating (in this case, called the “temperature”), forcing it to go with its less-likely guesses. Another thing I can do is give it weird text to complete. When I’m asking it to generate more text, I can give it a few example pies and ask it to add to the list (the original list of pies I showed it was alphabetical, so if I give it apple pies it tends to respond with more apple pies). OR, I can give it much weirder text. If I give it a bit of Harry Potter fanfiction, it draws on its previous training and can continue the story. But, similarly to the version of GPT-2 I trained on crochet patterns, it tends to twist the stories around to its special interest. In this case, pie.
Prompt: Harry glared at Snape.
Harry glared at Snape. “No, I’m not even talking about the boy here. You’re talking about the duplicate.” “Fine. Then I’ll get the rest of the ingredients.” So then, they got canned fruit and whipped cream and whipped cream and whipped cream and whipped cream and whipped cream and whipped cream and whipped cream. But one thing was for sure: there was no trace of rum. There was.
Prompt: Voldemort ran his fingers gently over Darth Vader’s shoulder.
Voldemort ran his fingers gently over Darth Vader’s shoulder. “C-Custard” “C-Custard”
Once it has steered the conversation, the neural net transitions to listing pies. Although some of them retain a certain flavor.
Voldemort Crumble Pie Mudblood Mincemeat Pies Snape Pie With Cheese
And its other pies are indeed more creative, definitely not found in the original training set. They don’t sound exactly delicious to me, but maybe this advanced artificial intelligence knows something we don’t. After all, it read most of the internet, including the cooking blogs.
Hot & Sour Apple Pie Caramelized-Zucchini Nog Nachos From Maple Syrup Pie Syrupy Chicken Pie Camel Crunch Crunch Mustard Raisin Pie Peach-pickle pie Pie-Bro From Pizza Particles Iceberg Chiffon Pie, Famous Finger-To-Finger Meringue Pie Spiced Coconut Pizza Chiffon Pie
On the other hand, maybe just maybe the neural net doesn’t know what it’s doing. These seem like uniformly a bad idea.
Fog-Crust Pecan Pie Tweezers, Olives, and Seafood Apple Pie Frozen Custard Pie with Three Glorious Chilies Half-Ton Pie Crust Fog-Crust Pecan Pie Pumpkin Ear Pie Onion Cassette Pie Tweezers, Olives, and Seafood Apple Pie Frog-Fudge Pie Ice-Egg Pie Bedtime Oil Tart Half-Tooth Nail Pie Frozen Custard Pie with Three Glorious Chilies Must-Fail Pecan Almonds with Pecan Almond Crust Beef and Cheese Fried Ronald McDonald’s Walnut Chocolate Pie
These neural net inventions miiight be okay if we knew what they actually were. At the very least, approach with caution.
Applewool Pie Brandywine Schnoches Pumpkin Pie Dough - Oh Noe Cowdy-Doo Pie Dried & Squirred Pumpkin Pie Morgue Pie Temptation To Fill A Beef Pies Woollewinkle Pie “Vinegar Pie” Meat Pie** Stimulant Cherry Pie Deep Dish Curb And Spoon Pie Standard Apples-and-Moolah My Meat Crust (Might As Well)
And these particular examples seem to have outed themselves as the work of a less-than-whollly competent AI.
Vessel With Raisin Bran It’s Crunchy Famous Pie Crust (Spinach Friend) Food And Flavors Whoopie Pie Valet Restaurant’s Chompin Park Pie Medieval Pastries With Liquid Crystal Tomato/Banana Pie As I Layered Mr. Robot’s Sweet Potato Pie Fluffy Cheese Pie #2 By BestMakesCherryToEggs Ahh So Good ‘n Easy Meat Pie Scheduled Coconut Cream Pie Standard Pie (Panties & Puff Pastry) Smiled and Cheerful Thanksgiving Pie, Famous Tarte Barre “Oral” Pie Robocoin Pie
For some examples of how the neural net managed its transitions from fanfiction to pies more or less gracefully (too long to fit in this blog post), enter your email here.