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  • Writer's pictureMason Brown

"They Terk Errr Jerbs"

Anyone who knows me well knows that I'm a huge fan of South Park. Yeah, bold, italics, and underline "huge". Trey and Matt have made episodes that not only laugh until it hurts, but also genuinely cry.

In one particular episode that aired around the Pandemic, Matt and Trey poked fun at the idea of AI taking away people's jobs. They do this by playing off the "small hick town" of South Park, where stereotypical hillbillies have to get jobs as Amazon Alexas in order to make a living.

One of the most common questions I get when people ask how things are going in the world of design is "Do you worry that AI will take away your job one day?" And my answer? A resounding "no" each and every time. Why is this, though?

In one of my courses at the University of Minnesota Twin Cities, a "Design Thinking" course, we learned about how at the root of every effective and high-quality design is a good human idea. This goes for every aspect of design, wether graphic, product, fashion, etc.

In one of our projects for this class, we were put into groups and tasked with quite literally "re-inventing" the standard coffee cup. My group's solution was a twistable lid that automatically closes and shuts (shoutout to whomever was in that group with me, I did most of the work).

When you ask yourself the question, "will AI ever be able to do that," the answer is obvious: of course not! Even if robots are created one day that can make coffee cups with twistable lids, the idea came from a human.

So what's the takeaway here? A common misconception in the design world is that "anyone can do it" and that is true to a certain extent. Tools like Canva mean that the barrier to entry for design is low, which is what makes this industry so fun and exciting. However, even if AI advances 10 years from now, it will never be as good as the human brain itself.

*Credit to Suzanne Abrams for the Redbubble sticker design

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