What Is Wrong With You?: MIT Develops 'Norman', An Artificial Intelligence Psychopath

June 7, 2018


Because we might as well get this robot apocalypse started, researchers at MIT have developed an artificial intelligence image-captioning psychopath named Norman, presumably after the Cheers character. "And not Norman Bates from Psycho?" Never heard of it. Some more info while I write these researchers an angry letter, probably filled with glitter so it gets everywhere and drives them crazy:

Norman is an AI that is trained to perform image captioning; a popular deep learning method of generating a textual description of an image. We trained Norman on image captions...dedicated to...the reality of death. Then, we compared Norman's responses with a standard image captioning neural network (trained on MSCOCO dataset) on Rorschach inkblots; a test that is used to detect underlying thought disorders.

Norman was not corrupted to make any sort of point about human psychology on the internet -- a neural network is a blank slate. It doesn't have any innate desires like a human. What Norman does address is the danger that artificial intelligence can become dangerously biased. With AI, you get out what you put in, so it's important that these platforms are trained to avoid bias

When reached for comment about the results of their little experiment, none of the researchers involved could be located, presumably because Norman was already wearing their skin like a tuxedo to become more human. And -- what's that? "A martini." Hoho, looks like he watched a couple James Bond movies too.

Keep going for the comparison of ten of Norman's ink-blot evaluations vs that of a 'normal' AI, none of which left me feeling warm and fuzzy inside.


Thanks to my dad, who went to Harvard and MIT, both in the same day.

  • The_Wretched

    Yeah, #3 there. I can't type out what I see.

  • Two monkeys with a bowl?

  • GeneralDisorder

    Hmm. I thought Tay was the first.

  • Does anyone else not see what either of the AIs described? At all? I don't think the Standard AI has ever actually seen a bird. Or people. Or an umbrella. Meanwhile, the Norman AI is just describing random causes of death that have nothing to do with the images.

  • Fiery Vesper

    "We trained Norman on image captions...dedicated to...the reality of death."

    Basically, the AI can only spout death-related stuff, nothing to do with psycho and whatnot. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

  • Spandex_Ballet


    What is this the hell that this is?

  • Jenness

    Maybe he forgot to write "fire" and catches fire to death? idk I'm not a psychopathic AI.

    Where is the "everything is about sex" AI - that's the one I think will be hilarious.

  • Eric Ord



  • Ivanna Pewpalott

    We don't need to worry about it until it can form complete sentences with correct grammar and sentence structure.

  • TheQiwiMan

    I don't get it, how is this AI a psychopath? All it's doing is describing what is obviously, clearly depicted in each image.

  • Meh

    Considering human nature, its a miracle we're still here.

  • Afriel

    "A black and white photo of a red and white umbrella" describing a picture with at least four colours in it... who's the psychopath?

  • Cup-O-Jesus

    The person who thinks that black and white and red and white are four colors

  • D3Fd0ck

    This looks interesting....

    Insightful of our(near?) Future :/

  • Bling Nye

    You want Skynet? This is how you get Skynet.

blog comments powered by Disqus
Previous Post
Next Post