Ten years ago Ross Goodwin wrote speeches for the Obama administration; nowadays he writes books and poems using artificial intelligence. He’s a good example of how life sometimes takes an unexpected turn. We talk to each other via Skype; me in Amsterdam, Goodwin in San Diego, both cities largely locked down. After we've exchanged the latest corona news, Goodwin wants to get one thing out of the way first: fixation on the fear that artificial intelligence will replace humans is nonsensical and unproductive.
It won't be the last time he emphasizes this, and a glance at his oeuvre reveals that he sees AI not as a threat, but as a creative opportunity. In March 2017, for his book 1 the Road, a contemporary version of Kerouac's On the Road, he equipped the interior of his Cadillac with an AI-writingmachine, a clock, a GPS-unit, and a microphone, and attached a camera to the outside.