By Tojin T. Eapen
To begin, we utilized chatGPT to generate descriptions of product concepts. These descriptions were then used as prompts for the text-to-image converter, which created visual representations of the Squinks based on the provided descriptions. This allowed us to systematically generate a wide range of Squinks concepts for analysis and evaluation.
Pens Inspired by Squids
Squids are marine animals that belong to the cephalopod family, which also includes octopuses and cuttlefish. They have soft bodies and are known for their ability to change color and shape rapidly. This ability is due to the presence of pigment cells called chromatophores in their skin which they use to blend in with their surroundings or to communicate with other squids. Squid ink is a dark, viscous substance that is produced by some species of squids.
When threatened, a squid will release a cloud of ink to obscure the predator's vision and allow the squid to swim away unnoticed. Our goal is to use generative AI techniques to generate ideas for pens that draw from both the shape of the squid and its ability to produce ink. Interestingly, squids also have an organ known as "pen" or gladius that serves as a protection for visceral organs.
Caribbean Reef Squid (Image Source: Betty Wills)
Despite the common analogy made between squids and pens due to their similar shape and use of ink, it seems that few writing products have actually been directly inspired by the design of the squid. This lack of inspiration from the squid in product design presents us with a good opportunity to test the use of generative artificial intelligence (AI) technology to generate novel design concepts as the images generated are unlikely to be substantially similar to existing products.
The prompt we provided for the creation of Squinks was short and simple: "Generate an image of a squid-inspired pen with a realistic appearance. The pen should have tentacles and use liquid that looks like squid ink." This prompt was used to generate the below designs for the squid-inspired pens using Midjourney and Stable Diffusion.
The prompt was used to guide the AI in generating concepts that were both realistic and imaginative, incorporating both the visual and functional features of the squid.
Only a small fraction of the concept generated was interesting and potentially useful. Some of these designs are shown in the above video. Of these, we selected 22 promising designs and list them below.