The father of an autistic boy created a children’s book using the popular generative artificial intelligence (AI) platform ChatGPT, in hopes of raising awareness about the condition, which impacts 1 in 36 children in the U.S., according to the CDC. The book, which is available in digital and print formats on Amazon.com, coincides with April’s Autism Awareness Month.
The author, Blake Bassett, chose to write the book after his 4-year-old son received an Autism diagnosis. Mr. Bassett said he struggled to find relatable books to help his son navigate difficulties, like his aversion to loud noises. “When my son was diagnosed with Autism, I searched for resources to help him understand how his brain works and how to overcome some of the challenges he faces. Unfortunately, I came up mostly empty-handed.” he said.
And so Mr. Bassett wrote Lander and the Magical Golden Earmuffs, a story about a boy named Lander who learns to overcome his fear of loud noises with the help of a friendly pirate named Captain Gold Tooth. In the book, the pirate captain gives Lander magical golden earmuffs that help him reframe loud noises into soothing, non-threatening sounds. By the end of the story, Lander becomes more confident in his ability to reframe loud noises without the earmuffs.
Notably, the book was entirely written and illustrated with AI. Mr. Bassett, a technology executive, used OpenAI’s ChatGPT for the words and the company’s AI image generator, DALL-E, for the artwork. He also used AI to transform photographs of himself and his son into oil painted versions of Captain Gold Tooth and Lander, respectively. The result is stunning.
When asked why he chose to use AI to write the book instead of writing it the old fashioned way, Mr. Bassett said he wanted to ride the wave of ChatGPT’s popularity to raise awareness about Autism. “At the end of the day, that’s what this is about–raising awareness and giving neurodiverse children tools to help them navigate their world,” he said.
For his part, Mr. Bassett's son is excited about the potential impact of the book. "Lander is going to help so many boys and girls," he said.
The experience inspired Bassett to establish Spectrum Books whose mission he says is to “…amplify the voices of those who see the world differently.” Bassett and his son plan to write more Lander and Captain Gold Tooth books under the new organization. Learn more about their work at www.spectrumbooks.ai.
About Spectrum Books
Spectrum Books amplifies the voices of those who see the world differently.