AI chan the essential worker

swipe (or click and drag) for next image

Idea inspiration 

The AI applications we have right now were raised from infancy by armies of workers in low cost jurisdictions performing surreal tasks with only the barest awareness of what they were doing.

I can only imagine it won’t be long until each company is raising an in-house AI using the work product of its own employees to replace as many of them as possible.

The prospect of humans having to train AI to do their own jobs and put themselves out of work is exactly the kind of idea that draws me to keep doing this comic. It seems so laughably outrageous but at this point in history it feels like nothing is off the table.

Art inspiration

It was fun designing the AI chan Frontline Series 209. There was not a lot of thought in it other than it had to look goofy as hell and be on wheels so it could fall over.

The shoulder pads probably come from 40K Space Marines, and the ‘209’ is a reference to ED-209:

The hospital workers were also fun to design. As they only appear in a few panels I didn’t go overboard, but wanted to give them all their own distinct identity.


The last panel was really tricky and had to pack a lot into a small space. There’s a foreground, midground and background that all had to do some work. I’m still not sure the banana peel is entirely legible (or comprehensible), but I think that’s where I’ll leave it.


After churning out a comic every week in the first month or two, I’ve now cooled off to the point where it takes me the better part of a month to do these. The ideas I have for new comics are also slowing to a dribble after roaring out like a firehose initially.

I’m coming to terms with the fact that I go very hot and then very cold on creative projects, but it’s nice to have a project like this where the barrier to re-entry is pretty low because I can go from idea to finished comic in a handful of sittings.

Even if the AI chan muse were to leave tomorrow and never come back, it’s pretty rewarding to look back over what I’ve done and see a bunch of comics that are finished, instead of something that was abandoned because I ran out of interest, energy or funds.