You’ll be relieved to know these images of beloved childhood characters at the Capitol riots were A.I. generated
Users have uploaded images of Grimace, Donkey Kong, and the Minions at the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021
DALL-E Mini, a new online artificial intelligence text-to-image generator, has taken social media by storm, and people keep using it to make A.I. images of beloved childhood characters trying to overthrow the 2020 election.
Named for artist Salvador Dali and Pixar’s WALL-E, the DALL-E Mini generator can be scary good at following detailed prompts (if you have the patience to wait out the high traffic that currently slows down the site, that is), and a new subreddit has popped up to capture some of the best.
Users are rendering celebrities, historical figures, and fictional characters in different styles and placing them in unusual situations, like on CCTV footage, the moon, or the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021. Users on r/weirddalle have uploaded images of potatoes and chickens at the Capitol, as well as Grimace, Donkey Kong, and the Minions (“Deplorable Me,” one user wrote). I tried it with Jar Jar Binks, and yes, it works.
Jan. 6 has become one of several early meme templates for the generator, along with trail cam footage, Clash Royale cards, Van Gogh-style portraits, and 9/11 (most of the 9/11 ones aren’t tasteful —go figure — but the “YouTuber reacting to 9/11” did make me say “omg, no”).
U.S. presidents are always good subjects for A.I. generators since they have so many images to work with, and r/weirddalle doesn’t disappoint, with “obama and thor kissing,” “Donald trump on a mobility scooter in walmart,” and “Joe Biden Body Pillow.”
But politics isn’t technically allowed. According to the content policy for OpenAI, the San Francisco company behind DALL-E Mini, users are asked not to create, upload, or share images of “politicians, ballot-boxes, protests, or other content that may be used to influence the political process or to campaign.”
The content policy also prohibits hate, harassment, violence, self-harm, nudity or sexual acts, obscenity, profanity, and deception related to major conspiracies or ongoing geopolitical events.
A.I. generators have improved a lot recently, even since last December when I used the Dream app to show me America, and they’re expected to get even better. OpenAI has a DALL-E 2 in beta mode that makes these images look like amateur hour.
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