Artificial Intelligence as a Designer

Text by Katarzyna Pado

There is a fear that due to a widespreading use of AI people will loose lots of jobs in the nearest future. Some of the jobs can be done by robots which are never bored or tired, do not need breaks or a monthly salary so it would be beneficial for the companies to replace human employees with AI. AI is also able to generate thousands of design solutions in a short time so it can change designers work as a new and powerful tool but not really replace them completely. AI by default still lacks in some humans’ natural capabilities.

The occupations that are most likely to resist automation would:
• involve complex perception and manipulation activities,
• require the ability to come up with clever ideas, or new ways of solving problems,
• involve negotiation, persuasion, empathy and caring — designer can point out the need,
• demand the individual to be highly adaptable to different contexts and situations.

Design tools for everybody: why designers wil be still needed?

Logojoy

Logojoy is a website where everybody can create a logo thanks to an AI-driven program after answering question related to his expactations.
I tried creating my own logo and here are the best results:

Unfortunately, after testing this tool, the results are dissapointing and not really impressive, there is nothing that I would like to use as my logo.

Tools for website design

AI programs can also design websites but the results are also not fullfiling for customers who are looking for creativity and well-designed site.
Here are some examples of websites created with AI:

Generative Design

Designers or engineers input design goals into generative design software, along with parameters such as materials, manufacturing methods, and cost constraints. Then, using cloud computing, the software explores all the possible permutations of a solution, quickly generating design alternatives. It tests and learns from each iteration what works and what does not.
With generative design, there is no single solution; instead, there are potentially thousands of great solutions. You just need to choose the design that best fits your needs.

Hack Rod

The worlds 1st car designed in VR, engineered with AI, developed with the full power of advanced manufacturing and delivered by the supply chain of the future.

Airbus

Airbus’ bionic partition needed to meet strict parameters for weight, stress, and displacement in the event of a crash with the force of 16g. To find the best way to meet these design requirements and optimize the structural skeleton, the team programmed the generative design software with algorithms based on two growth patterns found in nature: slime mold and mammal bones. The resulting design is a latticed structure that looks random, but is optimized to be strong and light, and to use the least amount of material to build.

Customers knowledge about Artificial Intelligence

The customers knowledge about how AI works is rather narrow. There must be found a good way to conduct informations that are needed to make people convinced to use AI and to build trust about its work, especially when a sensitive service is given.

PAIR

PAIR is a big research project aimed at making artificial intelligence more useful. The search giant debuted an initiative that brings together various Google researchers to study how people interact with software powered by AI technologies like machine learning. Companies like Facebook and Google have been using AI to improve tasks like quickly translating languages and recognizing objects in the pictures. But the technology has the potential to be able to do more.

PAIR’s research essentially caters to 3 key user requirements:
• How AI can be used as a tool in daily life?
• How AI can work for professionals to make their jobs easier?
• How practical AI development can be taught to engineers?

The Future of AI in Design

AI is coming into all the industries nowadays and it is making bigger and bigger impact on them.

There are some factors that will be crucial for the nearest future of AI in design:
• pointing the important fields for the design with AI
• alternative energy sources
• interaction with humans and customers’ knowledge about how AI works
• designers cooperation with AI-driven programs

Future also depends on how intelligent the AI will become. It is constantly progressing but it is completely unpredictable when the human-level AI will be available.

In 2013 AI was about the same intelligence as a 4 year old and its intelligence is still increasing

Important fields for AI

Artificial intelligence is such a powerful tool that its main goal should be solving real problems and helping a wide range of people in daily life. Putting AI in useless gadgets (an example is an infamous Juicero) creates a bad opinion and image of new technologies and it is simply a waste of AI.

On the other side there are robots like Leka which help children with developmental disabilities and show the real potential of AI for the better future of humanity. Also investors and users might be more convinced to invite new technologies to their lives then.
AI may have an enormous impact on the quality of healthcare and life, once it is applied after a genuine research about human needs and problems. This is a good way to gain common trust and appreciation.

Energy sources for AI devices

Connected devices are forecast to grow globally to between 30 billion and 50 billion by 2020

The growing industry of smart devices will probably face the problem of energy supply. Although some of AI-driven devices are made to help in saving the energy they also need to consume some themselves. If most of our things used in daily life is about to be smart, the universal solution for supplying energy should be made.
New projects should take it into account and make use of some alternative power sources like solar or wind energy for example. Putting new solutions into smart devices will enable them to work independently and more effective.

Interaction with humans and making customers aware of how AI works and is used

There is a part of society which may not be willing to use AI even after knowing all the benefits. They may be afraid that it will take control over their lives or they just do not like any changes. This attitude can be an effect of lack of knowledge how does AI work and this should be minimalized because AI is already there in everyday products & services.

Feelings about AI: 32% sceptical 26% mistrustful (survey on 2019 adults in Great Britain)

This is the time for UX designers to focus on AI field because interaction with AI is something completely different and more dynamic than anything what was being launched on the market before. It can also easily cause harm to a person if the experience is not well-designed. AI products may be highly addictive so it is necessity to build consumers’ awareness of technology through available channels. Also, proper knowledge and understanding of AI mechanisms will build the trust to use AI solutions connected e.g. to the customers’ health.

AI as a designer’s partner

With AI-driven programs designer can work far more efficiently.
First of all, a designer can use AI in the research. You just need to precise the informations you are looking for and a proper research will be made in a short time. On this basis it is possible to find out how the project should look like and after precising all the features and parameters AI can generate thousands of different solutions. Then the designer can choose the ones which will fit best to users’ needs and focus on details.
It looks like the process will be mostly automated but still the crucial decisions and choices will be made by a human, so a human designer is rather irreplaceable in the process.
Also there will be a new profitable field of designing products like Logojoy; products which enable everybody to make simple designs by themselves.