HiveMinds and Artificial Intelligence
Today we are seeing a new kind of information medium that will radically change society. This medium involves the fusion of hivemind technologies with advanced AI creative tools. The absolute power of this new medium implies that we are responsible for nurturing its growth.
Hivemind technologies such as social media prioritized growth over well-being. Its prioritization of growth over all other concerns has left a path of massive destruction that we perhaps may never fix. Creating a community for the community’s sake leads to the creation of cults.
It’s not enough to connect people together. If we are to accelerate this, we must design them around practices of meaning. We must avoid principles of instant gratification and leave our design communities hollow and never satisfied. We reject practices that sell sugar water.
A stellar example of this new information medium is @midjourney. Midjourney is a collaborative platform for generating AI art. Its interface is Discord, where everyone can see the AI art you generate. Everyone can reuse what they see to create new art. It’s an AI hivemind.
Social media are inextricably tied to tools of creation. TikTok is an example where lending tools for easy video creation led to the explosion of their platform. Hiveminds focused on the act of creation can have very different dynamics from a plain information-sharing platform.
A hivemind is effective because one can design practices around the many ways of human knowing.
The fascinating thing about Midjourney is that creators are constantly improving their AI prompting skills; consequently, the imagery generated by the AI keeps advancing. There is a feedback loop within the community that improves AI creation tools.
The Midjourney Discord servers are now the largest on the planet, with over 1 million users. This feeds into a massive AI that requires around $100m of GPU hardware. Social media, cultures of creative practice, and AI are merging at a rapid pace.
In the past, firms like FaceBook cared only for growth and thus tweaked their interaction design to emphasize engagement over all other considerations. This has destroyed democracies all over the world. We must learn from past failures and strive for a better world.
What is a better world, and how can we design hivemind AI systems that lead to a better world? Where can we find a philosophy and practices that revolve around nurturing and cultivating cultures that are rich in meaning?
To get to these new practices, we must begin questioning our Civilization’s metaphysics.
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Perhaps it is via game design that leads to collaborative creation. We are after all are creators of our designs and it is our designs the recreate ourselves.