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Computers match humans in understanding art

Stashed in: History!, Art!, Curation, Awesome, Turing, science

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an algorithm has been developed that demonstrates computers are able to "understand" art in a fashion very similar to how art historians perform their analysis, mimicking the perception of expert art critiques.

It's scary that this works so well.

So museums curated by algorithms are a very real possibility.

Okay, wait a minute, the word "understand" here is just link bait. As I see it, it's just saying that there is a consistent method used by art history scholars that can be learned by computers.

Yes, that's marvelous.

Could lead to better searching visual fields online for a broader audience. That's all good. It might even mean that a few mathematicians who previously dismissed Art History as merely a fuzzy study without rigor might come back and take a careful look at what's going on. The rigor of classifying what you're looking at is very subtle and very important skill that will serve humankind in many ways.

It doesn't mean that we can cut computers loose to go understand art for us.... if anything it means that the study of art should be more broadly taught as a basic skill for learning to categorize and understand the visual.

(Yes, I minored in Art History.)

Correct, computers cannot feel or empathize or show emotion... Yet.

Right now they can mimic the art of curation.

Then again so can Amazon and Netflix when they suggest things you might like.

So they are smarter than I, as an art professor would be smarter, but still not adept at picking out a poster for my office.

Soyeun, you are correct. We're still a long way from that.

But an algorithm CAN pick the next pop music star.

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