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Thought-Provoking Meeting of September 30, 2023

On September 30, 2023, SMRN had another warm meeting with a group of members including Farshid Kazemi, Nezih Erdogan, Niusha Hatefinia, Nina Czegledy, Ali Taheri, Mena El Shazly, Laura Marks, and Narjis Mirza.

During this meeting, our member Narjis Mirza presented her recent project titled "The Creative Feminine." Afterward, we had a general discussion led by Ali Taheri about Cognition, Intelligence, and AI.

Narjis, a practicing artist, shared her insights into the concept of "The Creative Feminine" inspired by Eastern philosophy, where the feminine is seen as the source of creativity, symbolized by the womb. She delved into the mystical dimension of Eastern philosophy, highlighting the feminine aspects of life and creativity. Narjis detailed her creative journey, which involves curating and disseminating lullabies from a rich tapestry of cultures, serving as a celebration of this universal source of creativity. She stressed the profound role lullabies play in fostering connections between mothers and their infants. Furthermore, she expounded on her unique art project, featuring an installation akin to the womb. This immersive experience integrates sensory, auditory, and visual elements, designed to offer participants a one-of-a-kind journey. Narjis also touched on her exploration of scent and touch in enhancing the bond between mothers and their babies. Her work reflects a deeply personal commitment to exploring the mystical and creative dimensions of the feminine. Notably, she mentioned her fruitful collaboration with other artists and her utilization of AI to visualize the spatial aspects of her project.

In the context of "Cognition, Intelligence, and AI," the discussion revolved around several significant themes. Firstly, there was an emphasis on the potential for generative AI to boost creativity and imaginative thinking, especially in artistic applications. Secondly, some members highlighted the challenges of teaching AI in schools, with students often holding misconceptions about AI's capabilities due to media portrayals. It was emphasized that providing students with a more accurate understanding of AI's true capabilities is crucial. Moreover, AI's fundamental nature and limitations were discussed, with a consensus that AI is essentially a tool or software without inherent understanding or consciousness. This prompted the need to acknowledge its limitations and avoid exaggerated claims about its capabilities. Lastly, the debate delved into philosophical ideas surrounding "multiplicity" versus "unity," with some arguing for unity in AI, but the general consensus favored embracing multiplicity. The focus should be on diverse and creative outcomes in AI development rather than striving for a singular and monolithic approach. In summary, the discussion offered insights into AI's multifaceted nature, its potential roles in education and artistic endeavors, and the importance of promoting accurate public perceptions about AI's capabilities and constraints.