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Seinfeld: Artificial intelligence parodies the show about nothing 24 hours a day


A non-stop adaptation of the 1990s sitcom »Seinfeld« can be seen on Twitch: An artificial intelligence writes the script live, directs it and laughs at its own jokes. Still, many are watching.

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Screenshot of »Nothing, Forever«: The nineties were rarely seen so garishly

“Have you heard of the restaurant on the moon?

Great food but no atmosphere«.



With this joke, stand-up comedian Jerry Seinfeld - no - Larry Feinberg opens a new scene of his endless show.


Now we see Larry in his New York apartment, where a few friends hang out and pass the comedy ball in dialogues that are at times banal, at times absurd.

Anyone who remembers US television in the 1990s quickly recognizes that it is a parody of the then cult and hit series »Seinfeld«.

There have been many of these in the past.

The new thing about the »Nothing, Forever« series, which is currently running on the Twitch streaming platform: the script was not written by a human being, the gags come from an artificial intelligence - all of them.

That's not all: The camera settings and the figures are also controlled by "generative algorithms," as the makers of Mismatch Media explain, according to their own statements, an association of researchers, entrepreneurs, technicians and others.

The unique selling point of the online show: the program runs 24 hours a day - in an endless stream of gags and TV nostalgia.

Block graphics and diet talks

Not only the material, but also the garish colors of the block graphics are reminiscent of the early nineties, such as »Zak McKracken« and »Maniac Mansion«.

Only when the characters are animated does it become clear that you are not dealing with one of the beloved DOS games, but with something completely different.

Again and again the figures speak against the wall, sometimes they run into each other or merge with each other on the couch.

Even in the original runtime, the series was famous for being about “nothing”.

A couple of man children - including Jerry's girlfriend Elaine oddly enough - have more or less irrelevant conversations between Jerry's apartment, the always same diner and the parties to which they are invited.

That nothingness has remained in the AI ​​reboot: so the conversations revolve around diets, chance street encounters, and snacks.

Anyone who hopes for a punch line is often disappointed.

Sometimes the conversation simply breaks off or is stifled by artificial laughter.

There is still a lot to learn

As the makers report to the US magazine Vice, the algorithms learn by evaluating the viewer chat.

Such feedback is essential.

The success of the chatbot ChatGPT only came about because it was trained by humans for years.

They had to separate nonsense from meaningful answers, sort out hurtful content and racism.

With the synthetic Seinfeld, the learning curve still seems to have a lot of room for improvement.

He only repeats jokes that he picked up on the Internet or pieces together punchlines from lines of dialogue.

Sometimes the characters also slip in the line and seem to speak along with stage directions, such as "goes off to the laughter of the audience".

The laughter from the retort follows only after a long pause.

Despite such obvious flaws, the show has garnered a small but loyal following over the past two months.

Around 10,000 users tune in day and night and some enthusiastically comment on the gags, count how often the singles go to the microwave or puzzle over where on the Internet Cyber-Elaine may have picked up a line of dialogue.


After all, 100 viewers find the project so worth preserving that they support it via the Patreon service: almost 500 euros are collected each month.

That's nothing compared to the million dollars that Jerry Seinfeld is said to have received for a 22-minute episode.

But the makers are already dreaming that their project could be the first step towards a completely new genre: endless series in Netflix quality.

One can only hope that the humor algorithms will learn a lot by then.


Source: spiegel

All tech articles on 2023-02-03

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