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Oye cómo va Illustration: Nelson Ponce

How machines eliminate the author

What is more human than the fear of being replaced? - Samantha to Theodore in HerSpike Jonze's film


These years are the past of the sky; Silvio Rodríguez said it, but I look up and there are still only stars, as Santiago Feliú said. In the newspapers we quote nuclear words again, and on the radio they talk about the haze again. In the street people pass by without bread under their arms, and there is no way to turn off the sordidness.

But not everything hurts; one can listen to Bach or Los Muñequitos de Matanzas with an almost frightening freedom, with an increasingly affordable quality and with a gratuity almost without adjective. The blinding light is always ahead, says Fernandez Larrea, but I believe that everything is changing.

The light on the screens gives a warning. For example, go to your computer. Never mind that Saturday has queues. Go and type "Udio" into Google; follow the instructions. You may have to make an account and then type in a prompta sequence of words with which you explain what you want to write, to do, to create. I don't even know what verb works for us. Describe the song you have dreamed of and tell it to that blinding light.

In a very short time, that song will be done in front of you, with arrangement. If you don't like it, you can improve it, give it a voice. Just do that, and you can create another 50, 100 songs. If you pay, you can even upload them to Spotify and, hopefully, get paid for it.

You don't need to be Freddy Mercury, or Spinetta, Paez, Formell, or have a brother named Phineas. You won't need a piano in the living room, a pleasant temperature, to have studied at ISA or to be Farah María's nephew.

Artificial intelligence will do for you what no school can. It will make the music. These years are the past of the sky, but the sky is full of devices and music also comes to participate in what inevitably happens. I think it was Martin Barbero who warned that the world had changed without us realizing it.

Algorithms define what is liked (it turns out that it is what sells the most). The 0's and 1's started creating songs. I'm going to keep making my own. I will continue listening to Marley and the three cute birds that sing behind the curtains that "everything will be fine", but there is a truth: the future arrived a long time ago; it had been announced, but one did not believe it. There are those who say that almost none of the work we do today will make sense in 20 years. Music will be there, but machines are already gaining ground.

What we are left with today is a truth that tends to be beautiful: people buy the copies of the Mona Lisabut I would give years of work to go see it at the Louvre. So there is a little hope. Even if the machines sing, earthlings are going to try to go see Madonna in 3074 and, as things are going, the diva will be there: like a virgin.

Rogelio Ramos Domínguez Writer of verses and songs. Full-time journalist and especially father of Claudia Ramos. More posts

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