Piotr Migdał

Genesis 1 but every word begins with 'A' - with GPT4

31 May 2023 | by Piotr Migdał | 4 min read

Generated by ChatGPT
Generated by ChatGPT

Some time ago, thanks to Scott Aaronson, I saw a translation of Genesis 1 using only words starting with 'a'. It felt much in the line of constrained poetry, alike Trurl's Electronic Bard written by Stanisław Lem and beautifully (ergo not faithfully) translated into English by Michael Kandel.

I got curious - which other letters work for this task? I went with 's'. Purely manually, with no help of AI or a voice from heaven.

Supreme Spirit shaped: space, stone.
Stone shapeless, stark, shadowed. Surface suspended Supreme Spirit.
Supreme Spirit said: shine. Saw shine.

I didn't bother to finish - by induction, it will work for any number of lines. Still, it would be a time-consuming task. Is be possible to generate such translation with AI?

At that time, GPT-3 was the best model. It didn't work at all. Neither did GPT3.5, the basis of the first ChatGPT - at least not out of the box. We can fine-tune these models, i.e. train them on additional, suitable data. See GPT-2 Poetry and GPT-4 Creative Fiction by Gwern.

GPT-4 turned out to be the game-changer - it works out of the box, in a zero-shot way. That is, the only thing you need is to give an instruction. There is no need to provide any examples, less so - perform fine-tuning. My very first approach turned out to be decently successful:

1 At arrival, Almighty assembled above and abyss.
2 Abyss absent actuality, abandoned, all around abysmal, Almighty's aura above aqua.
3 Almighty articulated, "Actualize aurora," and aurora appeared.
4 Almighty acknowledged aurora's appeal, and aurora away abyss.
5 Almighty announced aurora "awake," and abyss "asleep." And afternoon, and aurora arrived—alpha age.
6 Almighty articulated, "Assemble arch amid aqua, apart aqua and aqua."
7 Accordingly, Almighty assembled arch, apart aqua adown arch and aqua atop. And accomplished.
8 Almighty announced arch "atmosphere." And afternoon, and aurora arrived—another age.
9 Almighty articulated, "Aggregate aqua adown atmosphere at area, also arid area arise." And accomplished.
10 Almighty announced arid area "acreage," and aggregated aqua "aquatic." And Almighty agreed acceptable.
11 Afterward Almighty articulated, "Acreage advance abundant: agricultural articles and arbores around acreage, abundant with almonds, assorted." And accomplished.
12 Acreage advanced abundant: agricultural articles abundant with almonds assorted and arbores abundant with almonds assorted. And Almighty agreed acceptable.
13 And afternoon, and aurora arrived—apex age.
14 Almighty articulated, "Actualize astral above atmosphere, apart awake and asleep, also accenting appointed anniversaries, and ages and annuals,
15 also as astral above atmosphere, allowing illumination around acreage." And accomplished.
16 Almighty assembled ample astral—the ampler astral authorizing awake, and another astral authorizing asleep. Additionally, astronomical entities.
17 Almighty allocated astral above atmosphere, allowing illumination around acreage,
18 authorizing awake and asleep, and apart aurora and abyss. And Almighty agreed acceptable.
19 And afternoon, and aurora arrived—quartet age.
20 Almighty articulated, "Aqua abound animated entities, and avians ascend across atmosphere."
21 Accordingly, Almighty actualized ample aquatic animals and animate aqua, agitated and active, assorted, and airborne avians assorted. And Almighty agreed acceptable.
22 Almighty applauded and articulated, "Amplify and augment; add aqua animals and amplify avians around acreage."
23 And afternoon, and aurora arrived—quintet age.
24 Almighty articulated, "Actualize acreage animals assorted: animal agriculture, ambulatory animals, and animalistic, all assorted." And accomplished.
25 Almighty actualized animalistic animals assorted, animal agriculture assorted, and ambulatory animals assorted. And Almighty agreed acceptable.
26 Afterwards Almighty articulated, "Assemble anthropoids, alike and analogous us; authorize authority above aquatic and avians, above animal agriculture and animalistic animals, and above ambulatory animals around acreage."
27 And Almighty actualized anthropoids, alike Almighty, analogous Almighty actualized; androgynous and gynandrous actualized.
28 Almighty applauded and articulated, "Amplify and augment; annex acreage and administer. Administer aquatic and avians and above animate ambulatory animals."
29 Almighty articulated, "Allocate agrarian almonds around all acreage and arbores abundant with almonds. Allocated as aliment.
30 And animalistic animals and avians and ambulatory animals—all animated with animation—I allocate agrarian articles as aliment." And accomplished.
31 Almighty admired all assembled, and absolutely amazing. And afternoon, and aurora arrived—adjacent age.

Sure, you can complain that a few words start with a different letter - the same way that GPT-4 gets only a B on a quantum computing exam. While GPT4 translation skills are nowhere near that of Yann LeCun's dog (for sure, they are Border Collie), I still find it impressive.

GPT-3.5 is stubborn - it is hard to move forward once it gets an answer (even if wildly incorrect). GPT-4 is much better at collaborating - it will try to apply your suggestions. If you point to an error, it will admit it and attempt to make suitable changes. Very often, it takes a few iterations to get a suitable result.

See also my previous blog post: DALL·E 2 and transcendence - generating esoteric images with AI.