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Ready to try out something new? 

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What creature inhabits the space between a unicorn and a dinosaur? And how can we get a glimpse of how it could look like?

Joining forces with our artificial partners, we developed a process that helps us to envision the space between and beyond categories. While we often wrongfully assume that AI is thinking as binary as we are, the opposite is true. This toy development process will show you two ways to visualize the in-between spaces. 

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Curate your data

No matter how you want to use AI to envision your creature, you will have to start with curating your own dataset. We carefully selected images of plush unicorns and dinosaurs for our toy. We used around 300-400 images. They should be alike in terms of complexity and shape and presented on a white plane background.

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The latent space hunt for the dinosaur-unicorn

Once we curated our data, we trained a StyleGAN for 7000 episodes. After several hours we were then able to get a first glimpse on our special creature.  Using the latent space -a 2D projection of a multidimensional space of images- we were able to search for images that could not identify as either unicorn or dinosaur. In the latent space, everything is spatially related. However, the closer images are positioned, the more visual information they share. 

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The latent walk from unicorn to dinosaur

An alternative way to search for our in-between creature is the latent walk. We searched images our StyleGAN created for very unicorn and very dinosaur like ones. Since the AI does not think in those binary categories we could then ask it to interpolate -meaning to generate images in between- our previously selected unicorn and dinosaur images.

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Start designing

With plenty of visual inspiration it is now time to start designing the actual toy. How closely you relate your concept to the AI stimulus is up to you. However, keep trying to break the stereotypes!

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