An Oxford mathematician explains how AI could enhance human creativity


The game of Go played between a DeepMind computer program and a human champion created an existential crisis of sorts for Marcus du Sautoy, a mathematician and professor at Oxford University. "I've always compared doing mathematics to playing the game of Go," he says, and Go is not supposed to be a game that a computer can easily play because it requires intuition and creativity. So when du Sautoy saw DeepMind's AlphaGo beat Lee Sedol, he thought that there had been a sea change in artificial intelligence that would impact other creative realms. He set out to investigate the role that AI can play in helping us understand creativity, and ended up writing The Creativity Code: Art and Innovation in the Age of AI (Harvard University Press). The Verge spoke to du Sautoy about different types of creativity, AI helping humans become more creative (instead of replacing them), and the creative fields where artificial intelligence struggles most.