TikTok has just added a text-to-image AI generator to its mobile application, in the form of an effect for videos. This tool is considerably more basic than DALL-E or Midjourney, but allows the general public to experiment with this surprising technology.
In 2021, scientists discovered that AI can generate images from text. Since then, this “text-to-image” technology has been booming.
After DALL-E by OpenAI, reserved for professionals, DALL-E Mini aka CrAIyon became available to the general public. More recently, MidJourney has been shocking artists with its ability to create images focusing on beauty.
AI-generated images are shared frantically on social networks, and the technology has gone viral. Now, TikTok has decided to capitalize on this new trend by integrating a text-to-image generator into its own application.
Thanks to this new AI greenscreen effectusers can type a text and receive an image that can be used as a background in their videos. The effect is accessible from TikTok’s camera screen.
A deliberately limited AI to avoid excesses?
It should be pointed out that the images produced by TikTok’s AI are basic compared to models such as DALL-E 2 or Google Imagen. They are mainly abstract drawings, whereas DALL-E 2 and Imagen can create photorealistic images.
However, it is possible that TikTok has deliberately limited its model to ensure that the content generated complies with the application’s rules. In particular violent or sexual images.
If TikTok’s model were as complex and photorealistic as DALL-E 2 or Image, it would certainly be exploited by some users to create shocking content.
However, it seems particularly risky to put such a tool in the hands of TikTok’s one billion users. A abstract model can help avoid such drifts.
When the effect is selected, TikTok suggests different texts such as ” Diving into a purple ocean “, ” Hidden village in the mountains ” or ” Erupting rainbow volcano “. These sample texts confirm TikTok’s focus on abstract imagery.
However, users can enter their own texts. If the text contains words related to violence or nudity, the image generated will be abstract, even if the colors match.
Several content trending on TikTok uses the filter. One suggests entering one’s name in the generator to discover the corresponding image according to the AI, while another uses the same idea for the date of birth.