March 11

How Artificial Intelligence Will Enhance Human Creativity

It's possible that when you think of artificial intelligence, you imagine Minority Report or IronMan. But artificial intelligence is already deeply embedded in many aspects of your daily life. Your Netflix recommendations, Amazon purchases and Facebook feed are all driven by algorithms and artificial intelligence. If you're reading this on Medium, it's possible it showed up based on your reading history.

As machines collect more data, they're becoming more intelligent and we're moving to a place where we can build predictive machines, ones that make suggestions based on data about our past behavior. This is why you see ads for the new car, book, or cookware set you've been researching. As the machines collect more data, what is possible with the data will become incredibly powerful.

AI Driven Design

Adobe Sensei is embedded into all of Adobe's products, allowing creative people to go from idea to execution in record time. Take something simple like the custom album covers that we create for Unmistakable Creative podcast’s guests. I upload one of the covers from Adobe Create to my smartphone. With the push of a button, I am able to extract font recommendations from our hand-drawn fonts, color swatches, and even trace a guest’s headshot to damn near perfection.

Last year when I interviewed Jeffrey Veen, he told the senior leadership at Adobe, “People are creating so many photos using photoshop filters, but they aren't using our products.” It seems they've listened because, the Creative Cloud has become an arsenal in the hands of someone with a bit of imagination and some creativity. This is just the tip of the iceberg.

I spent years trying to design a really great media kit for The Unmistakable Creative. With Beautiful.AI I finished it in 15 minutes. It took longer to figure out what I wanted to put in the media kit than it did to make it. The tool isn't what will make your presentation beautiful. It's the ability to imagine what's possible with it.

AI Driven Marketing

In the summer of 2018, when we moved to another email service provider briefly, our open rates and click through rates plummeted. A friend of mine had explained to me that artificial intelligence wasn't magic, but if there was a place in our business where data was collected, we could use artificial intelligence to improve it.

Email marketing is all about data. When I started searching for AI for email marketing, I discovered Ematic Solutions. They take our Mailchimp lists and automate the segmentation so we're only hitting our most engaged subscribers frequently, while our less engaged subscribers are targeted less. All of this is completely automated, and we're seeing open rates that reach upwards of 30%.

AI Driven Productivity

AI-based productivity tools are already in use by thousands of people. Chances are you use one without even realizing it.

  • If you use Calendly to book appointments, that is AI at work.
  • Superhuman uses AI to create the fastest email experience ever made. And they live up to the promise. I've convinced multiple friends to make the switch.

Many of the day to day manual tasks we spend our time on will be completely automated going forward.

This becomes really powerful when you start combining various technologies. At GAP consulting, my friend Gareth uses Airtable to automate repetitive tasks for businesses. Using a series of conditional statements, we've automated booking podcast guests, onboarding new clients, and tracking tons of data. He's saving businesses dozens of hours and thousands of dollars.

Imagination will Be More Important than Technical Proficiency

Because tools are only going to get easier to use, the value of technical proficiency will decline, while the value of creativity will increase, leading to the intersection of imagination and innovation. With most of our tools, we'll spend more time imagining what we want to create and less time executing on our ideas. Proficiency will be a commodity, imagination won't.

Twenty years ago, at the start of the first dot com boom, it used to take thousands of dollars and hundreds of hours to build a web site. Today it can be done for less than 20 dollars a month and in less than 24 hours. It won't be long before we can build a web site with a few commands and the push of a button.

So where does that leave us as creatives? With more power than we've ever had before.

Artificial intelligence will have a profound impact on humanity. As Spiderman says, with great power comes great responsibility. So what will you do with it? Make cat videos or create something you're proud to put your signature on. We're on the edge of a creative revolution. Don't waste it.


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