Season 3 of the Twitch series 'Artificial' is here and it brings some interesting new tools for the audience to play with. 'Artificial: Remote Intelligence', the award-winning show's first-ever completely remotely produced season, gives the audience the chance to create characters, choose settings and even control the music.
That last part is the most fascinating part of this season. 'Artificial: Remote Intelligence' is the first public use of LifeScore, an AI-driven adaptive music-scoring tool that harnesses audience sentiments to create unique music.
In the season's premiere episode, the show's co-creator and showrunner Bernie Su joined LifeScore co-founder Tom Gruber, who is also the co-founder of a little old AI called Siri, in explaining how the tool works. LifeScore creates scores by using sentiment analysis, looking at keywords from the chat to determine the music.
There are four different emotional classes to the music on the show — happy, sad, intense, and mysterious — and three levels of intensity to each class. The tool analyzes the chat to determine the mood in real-time, going deeper than just "happy" or "sad" to even use the underlying sentiments behind emotes and slang terms like "lol".
The emotional classes aren't just arbitrary distinctions, they're based on the sort of moods that a show like 'Artificial' might move through. The best part is, the tool doesn't require audience members to focus on influencing the music. It can run in the background, using normal discussions in the chat to shape the score accordingly. It can even translate words like "pizza" to mean "happy" though the tool is still growing while it is being used.
The basic vision behind the tool is to create a film score for your life, generated based on your own personal moods. But even though it wasn't envisioned by its creators specifically for the show, it does seem to work amazingly well with the sort of storytelling that 'Artificial' is so famous for.
Musically speaking, the tool doesn't focus on notes, instead, it looks at music as blocks of sounds that can be combined in varying permutations to create a score. And it's so powerful, that no two sets of music it generates are exactly the same.
Gruber describes it as something like taking a walk in a zen garden where the garden itself is created as you walk ahead. In essence, the music literally doesn't exist until it is generated by the audience. As an interactive web series, 'Artificial' is already at the cutting edge of web-based storytelling and with LifeScore, the show is pushing into uncharted and exciting new territory.
'Artificial: Remote Intelligence' streams on Thursdays at 6 pm PT / 9 pm ET at twitch.com/ArtificialNext.