Artificial intelligence may be the hottest thing happening in tech, but what are the best AI tools available to the public for enhancing productivity, improving writing, and generating multimedia content, including sounds and videos? From AI tools that can create images for use on social media platforms to video enhancers that are capable of deleting objects and creating virtual avatars, we’ve found some of the best AI tools for creating images and videos, as well as exploring the broad-ranging scope of how AI works.
AI IMAGE GENERATORS
How to generate AI images from text:Stable Diffusion creates images from a text prompt, often producing bizarre results.
AI image tool aggregator:Nightcafe is an online AI image generator with a twist: It allows the user to use several different AI image generators, including Stable Diffusion, DALL-E, and others. Users can also apply a range of styles, so the experience is easy to get started with.
Edit and refine AI images: AI image generators seldom produce good results the first time around. Instead, it is a process of evolution, refining the things that work and removing those that don’t. Image.ai does this, creating image after image until the user accepts the result.
AI image enlargement: Ever wish the “Mona Lisa” was a bit bigger? The image generator DALL-E can handle that. The outpainting feature expands images, using AI to expand the edges of an image.
Edit an image using generative AI: If you want to see how your house might look on the set of The Last of Us, Photoleap can help. The AI scenes feature of this iOS-only app uses AI to turn an image into a post-apocalyptic, fantasy cartoon or any one many other scene types.
Remove and replace something in an image: Runway Research offers a range of what they call Magic Tools, AI video tools that use machine learning to process images in strange ways. My favorite is Erase and Replace, which finds an object in an image and replaces it using AI.
AI cats: Everyone knows the Internet is all about cats, so it is no surprise that an AI cat creator exists. The same site can also create AI-generated horses, art, and people.
AI VIDEO TOOLS
Add text to videos with AI: Upload a video to Nova AI, and it will automatically caption, categorize and tag it. Nova AL struggles with music, though: I uploaded a Leonard Cohen live video to it, and it subtitled “Let’s not talk of love or change” as “Let’s smart things we can’t.” Not quite what Leonard meant, but it has a certain poetry of its own.
Text to video AI: Need a video of a confused bear in a calculus class? Meta’s new Make-A-Video tool can create a video from pretty much any text thrown at it. It is in limited beta at present, but a public version is coming soon.
AI video generator for pitches:Synthesia.io creates pitch videos from text in a few minutes using a computer-generated avatar. There is a free demo: Enter text and it sends a completed video in a couple of minutes. The full version costs $30 a month and can create longer videos like how-to, educational, or marketing videos using any of 85 AI avatars.
AI video editor: As well as replacing things in an image, the Magic Tools feature from Runway Research can also delete things from a video. Mark the object to be deleted, and the AI tracks and removes it frame by frame. Another Magic Tool can do the opposite, automatically removing the background and replacing it with an AI-generated one. Both require some tweaking to get the best results, but they can produce excellent results with patience.
EXPLORING HOW AI WORKS
Ask AI questions:ChatGPT from OpenAI is the best-known conversational AI system and is the technology underlying many of the tools in this article. It is a remarkable system that can create a convincing imitation of talking to a real person. It is free to try if it isn’t too busy to chat at the moment.
Explore neural networks: Neural networks are one of the fundamental tools of AI, the algorithms that allow them to learn things. This fascinating online experiment from Google Research shows how they work by taking the user inside a neural network to see how it recognizes objects in webcam videos.
Debate with AI: IBM is a big name in AI research, so they decided to prove it with That’s Debatable. They asked people to share their opinions on several topics, which the Watson Discovery service analyzed and boiled down into a final summary speech. The series is finished, but a live demo allows users to enter their opinions; the tool analyzes which side of the debate these opinions fall on.
Use AI to detect AI-written text: If an AI can write text that sounds like it was written by a real person, how can anyone be sure something was written by a person rather than an AI? Open AI has created the AI Text Classifier, an AI tool that can deduce if a piece of text was written by an AI or a person. I tried it on this article, and it told me that “The classifier considers the text to be very unlikely AI-generated.” That’s a relief.
AI SOUND TOOLS
Sing like Freddie Mercury: The FreddieMeter from Queen and YouTube helps channel your inner Freddie to see how close you can get to the real thing.
AI music generator:Soundraw can create multiple pieces of incidental music in seconds. Pick a mood, a genre and a theme and the AI system creates 15 short music clips to choose from.
Create AI voiceovers: Artificial speech was one of the first applications of AI, and the latest evolution is Murf. This sophisticated service can create very natural-sounding speech from text in 120 voices and 20 languages. The newest feature is an interesting one called Voice Cloning, where the service will try and clone human voices.
Read text out loud:NaturalReader is another voiceover service, but with a twist: the app snaps a smartphone photo and extracts the text and read it out loud in any one of the several hundred voices on offer. Their Personal Reader app can also read eBooks, PDFs, screenshots, and many other sources of text.
Use AI to clean up audio recordings: Record yourself speaking and you will be horrified at the background noises, umms, ahhs and lip-smacking. Cleanvoice.ai cuts these out of your audio, leaving only the important stuff. It works with accents and multiple languages.