By Glenn McDonald, April 24, 2017
The second annual competition features machines competing for $100,000 in prizes.
Depending on how you define your terms, machines have been making art for decades — even centuries. From sticks to brushes to styluses, artists have deployed increasingly sophisticated tools and technology since the first documented cave painting, found in the famous Lascaux caves.
In recent years, rapid advances in robotic technology and artificial intelligence have arguably initiated an entirely new era of artistic expression — one in which machines are no longer just tools, but collaborators, or even artists in their own right. Algorithms and dedicated AI programs are generating original ideas, imagery, and music — check out Google’s Magenta initiative for some recent and occasionally hallucinatory examples.