Studio for the end of the world

Can we use AI to imagine household brands of not-too-distant futures?
Academic | 2022
Collaboration with Mariam Ibrahim
In fall 2022 — just before ChatGPT opened the gates of generative AI to the public — we explored an exhibit speculating future human-animal hybrids, and I started reading about design fiction and diegetic prototyping. We started with a question: could the unreliability of AI help us come up with ideas of the sort we struggle to with present bias? We decided to use generative AI as a futures tool to invent household brands of the future, solutions to our present problems that will be taken for granted in future life. The studio acts as a piece of design fiction to explore what might line our future stores and shelves, and who the minds behind those items might be.

Design Process

We began by collecting reports of current events trends, and innovation topics from journalism and pop culture. We then fed these topics to text-based AI and asked it to generate and name future businesses. These business concepts were used as prompts for image generating AIs (typically Dall-e and Midjourney) and modified to produce advertising and editorial images of the products. Once AI had created the product and brand concept, we created logos to represent the companies.