Manual Instructions

I asked DALL-E to show me “a step-by-step tutorial on how to draw hands”. Explains a lot.

AAN HARD OURND DOWVS NAVW ARE Rar Don Dangr Anaw tarr damg hvaarp Haund lid S 4 hiow ortand EG HMNSNG DAVW ANN DRRV HA

DALL-E 2 rendition of a step-by-step tutorial on how to draw hands

24 March 2024

Pardalote Note

Some random web-surfing the other day reminded me of Tasmania’s forty-spotted pardalote, the rarest of Australia’s four species of pardalotes or peep-wrens. Unlike the other three species, the endangered forty-spot is confined to Tasmania, mainly to Bruny Island and Maria Island in the state’s southeast and east. The dots on its wings run closer to sixty than forty, so whoever named it clearly gave up counting too soon.

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12 February 2024


I was floundering around on Friday night with some verses on floating-point operations per second, as you do. Flops is such a fun word to play with…

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20 November 2022


When digging through some old files of forum and workshop comments from my most active years on the OEDILF, I unearthed some throwaway verses that were worth cleaning up and putting on display, like old glass bottle-stoppers dug out of the mud.

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9 October 2022 · 1 Comment

Further Dalliances

I’ve been continuing my earlier experiments with DALL-E 2 and Stable Diffusion—now with added Midjourney. Click through for a gallery.

1 September 2022

Unstable Dalliances

Since my initial burst of activity with DALL-E 2 I’ve tried a few more queries on it, most of which didn’t produce much of interest, but there were a few exceptions. Things got more interesting when I was able to compare it with Stable Diffusion, which has been opening up to beta testers and let me (and thousands of others) on a few days ago. Unlike DALL-E 2, Stable Diffusion is aiming to be completely open, with no holds barred, which means it’s inevitably going to be used to churn out AI-generated porn and to rip off living artists. Not the greatest advertisement for the power and promise of artificial intelligence. But judging from some of its results, I wouldn’t panic just yet (click through for a gallery)…

Stable Diffusion rendition of grizzly bears sitting at a desk

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14 August 2022

Intelligible Artifice

It seems a lifetime ago now, but as an undergraduate I took courses on Computer Graphics, Digital Image Processing and Artificial Intelligence, so it’s no surprise that I’ve been fascinated by DALL-E 2 and the results that people have been getting from it. I signed up for the wait-list two months ago, and yesterday received an invite. I’ve already burned through half of my fifty credits for the month, so had better start pacing myself… but it’s so much fun. Here’s a gallery of my best results so far.

DALL-E 2 rendition of a spaceship over Edinburgh

1 August 2022


More COVID-19 limericks to pass the idle springtime hours.

The symptoms of Covid are vague: / It may or may not bring an ague, / And your shortness of breath / Could mean imminent death. / It's a 21st-century plague.

My girlfriend, as long as I've known 'er, / Has been happiest being a loner. / Now the whole of the nation / Is in self-isolation, / She's desolate: my, my, Corona.

The uncommon girl’s name Corona is set to become even less common because of SARS-CoV-2. In recent weeks I’ve seen or heard the coronavirus being called Corona, the Corona, the Rona, and Covid, with or without the capitals.

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28 March 2020

A Murder of Poesy

Okay, so perhaps the impulse to make light of COVID-19 hasn’t left me yet…

Nearly twenty young crows could be seen / Gathered tightly en masse on the green. / Out of breath, and in shock, / An old crow told the flock, / 'Keep your distance, you corvid nineteen!'

(It’s not actually a murder of crows.)

13 March 2020

All Shook Up

There are reports today that Tom Hanks and his wife have contracted coronavirus on the Gold Coast in Australia, where he was filming a movie about Elvis Presley. How distressing for them both, and what a rotten break for a fine actor. But an Elvis movie… well, it’s hard not to enjoy a moment of black humour before the shutters come down, because it turns out there’s an Elvis song for every COVID-19 mood.

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12 March 2020