Any sentence containing the word ‘dinosaur’ is worthy of attention. Admit it, it happens to you too.
And if not, I’ll tell you why we’re talking about dinosaurs in a technology blog. And no, we’re not talking about outdated professions. Or not at all. You see, in a matter of a couple of weeks, some images of dinosaurs that are really cute have made their way around Twitter and Instagram, passing through the infinite loop that is WhatsApp, to be shared among family, friends and work colleagues.
Why social networks have been filled with dinosaurs
The dinosaurs represented different professions (from ‘veterinarisaurus’ to ‘bartendersaurus’ to ‘designsaurus’). In a matter of days, more than 6,000 publications arrived on Instagram to the delight of users who – and here’s the important fact – began to make their own creations to feel represented.
This trend has been made possible thanks to Artificial Intelligence. In particular, thanks to the Midjourney platform, one of the most widely used AI image generators, how else could users have created so many variations of dinosaurs adapting to all the professions imagined, with such quality that they could have passed for the work of a digital artist?
We have only been testing the capabilities of ChatGPT for a few months now, asking it to make you a healthy menu with its corresponding shopping list, or to correct a few lines of code in a matter of seconds. And suddenly, BANG! AI image generation also reaches the general public. One day you wake up, discover viral content, and suddenly feel the need to make your own ‘dino’.
That’s when users roll up their sleeves, turn to Google to research how those images were made and, without even realising it, have created a Discord profile, signed up for Midjourney and are already familiarising themselves with the term ‘prompt’. Isn’t human beings fascinating?
Using Midjourney to create social media content
Now, jokes aside, it’s fascinating to see what we can do with a couple of articles or YouTube videos, without the need for any prior technical knowledge.
When we got the ‘dinos’ we decided to create our own version for Telefónica Tech’s social networks, because although there were many professions in the hashtag, we missed the more technological ones.
I found several references to the ‘dinoprofessions’ that pointed to Midjourney. In a few more minutes, I also found the origin of the trend: the precursor had been a user called @the_ai_dreams who, with more than 162k followers, is dedicated to sharing AI-generated content on a regular (and daily) basis on his Instagram account.
Therefore, seeing all the references, I linked my Discord account and entered this new (and free, with the trial version) universe offered by Midjourney. I discovered that there were some rooms within Discord called ‘Newcomer rooms’ where you could start testing and generating images. I decided to enter ‘newbies-42’ and start playing with the promts.
Using a couple of values: ‘super cute’, ‘baby blue dinosaur’, ‘hacker’… I managed to generate the first images with a result that was very close to what we were looking for:
The process was relatively short, but that was not the best thing about it. It was fascinating to see how users were working online, generating their own content in real time, testing and versioning. One user was developing a kind of comic book because I could see —while he was generating them— the course of all the derivative pieces.
We learned how it worked and did several tests, and we managed to make our own version of the trend. You can already see it on our Instagram profile (in Spanish):
Community Managers, journalists, designers… what’s going to happen to us?
It is inevitable to ask ourselves, talking about professions and dinosaurs: should we feel threatened? There are many users who are frightened by the potential that these AIs are demonstrating and who see their days numbered.
However, the example of ‘dinoprofessions’ is perfect to start to ‘imagine’ what they can offer us and complement us. Such a trend could never have happened without an AI. Simply because:
- There would not have been so many posts with the hashtag.
- We would not have been able to generate such content at such a speed, as such an illustration could have taken a senior creative several days of work to produce.
- The feeling of representation would have been much lower due to fewer pieces.
- And, directly, it would not have gone viral.
These types of tools will change —in fact, they already are changing— our everyday life. Yet, far from ‘taking away our work’, they will allow us to optimise processes, be more agile and develop other types of tasks. And, of course, new jobs will emerge, such as the role of prompt engineering.
The skill lies not in being able to get into Midjourney or DALL-E (for example) and generate an image in seconds. It’s about being able to control the AI in such a way that you can extract the image you need and have in your head immediately. And then use that same style and resources to generate complementary ones.
It is understandable that it is hard to imagine where these tools are going to take us in the workplace, but what is clear is that they are not going to be the only tools we can use. What is clear, however, is that we must not waste time and that we must start learning about them now. And, if there are dinosaurs involved, even better!