AI

The Download: AI comics, and US tensions with China over EVs


—Will Douglas Heaven

Thirteen years ago, as an assignment for a journalism class, I wrote a stupid short story about a man who eats luxury cat food. This morning, I sat and watched as a generative AI platform called Lore Machine brought my weird words to life.

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Lore Machine analyzed the text, extracted descriptions of the characters and locations mentioned, and then handed those bits of information off to an image-generation model. An illustrated storyboard popped up on the screen. As I clicked through vivid comic-book renderings of my half-forgotten characters, my heart was pounding.

What sets Lore Machine apart from its rivals is how easy it is to use. Between uploading my story and downloading its storyboard, I clicked maybe half a dozen times. That makes it one of a new wave of user-friendly tools that hide the stunning power of generative models behind a one-click web interface—and heralds the arrival of one-click AI. Read the full story.

Chinese EVs have entered center stage in US-China tensions

So far, electric vehicles have mostly been discussed in the US through a scientific, economic, or environmental lens. But all of a sudden, they have become highly political. 

Last Thursday, the Biden administration announced it would investigate the security risks posed by Chinese-made smart cars, which could “collect sensitive data about our citizens and our infrastructure and send this data back to the People’s Republic of China,”



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