SOMETIMES WE STUMBLE upon insight in unexpected places. Late last year, for example, I read perhaps the most precise description ever written about AI-generated art in The New York Times comments section. The article described what happened when a man named Jason Allen submitted an image generated by the AI program Midjourney to an art contest and won. (Long story short: Artists got mad.) While the story focused on the debate over the ethics of AI image generators, the comment had nothing to do with thorny moral considerations. Instead, it described how the winning work looked. “Congratulations to Mr. Allen on coaxing an algorithm to spit out an image that looks like a 1970s prog rock album cover,” it read. The commenter’s handle? Cynical Observer.