Generative AI Hits The Commodore 64

Image-generating AIs are typically trained on huge arrays of GPUs and require great wads of processing power to run. Meanwhile, [Nick Bild] has managed to get something similar running on a Commodore 64. (via Tom’s Hardware).

A figure generated by [Nick]’s C64. We shall name him… “Sword Guy”!
As you might imagine, [Nick’s] AI image generator isn’t churning out 4K cyberpunk stills dripping in neon. Instead, he aimed at a smaller target, more befitting the Commodore 64 itself. His image generator creates 8×8 game sprites instead.

[Nick’s] model was trained on 100 retro-inspired sprites that he created himself. He did the training phase on a modern computer, so that the Commodore 64 didn’t have to sweat this difficult task on its feeble 6502 CPU. However, it’s more than capable of generating sprites¬†using the model, thanks to some BASIC code that runs off of the training data. Right now, it takes the C64 about 20 minutes to run through 94 iterations to generate a decent sprite.

8×8 sprites are generally simple enough that you don’t need to be an artist to create them. Nonetheless, [Nick] has shown that modern machine learning techniques can be run on slow archaic hardware, even if there is limited utility in doing so. Video after the break.

[Thanks to Stephen Walters for the tip!]

 

4 thoughts on “Generative AI Hits The Commodore 64

  1. Hm. I’m not sure what I’m looking it at.

    Could be an two-legged elephant (looking sideways)
    or a swordsman holding a dagger and a miniature shield (looking frontal).

    Or something entirely different?
    It’s like seeing shapes in clouds, I suppose?

    Btw, no offense. Pixel-art is fascinating.
    But how about porting things to GEOS eventually ?
    It can use memory expansions, such as REUs.

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