There have been some studies using computer interfaces which have tried to get great apes interested, with mixed results. Some have shown tasks being completed even faster by them than by humans, others have shown complete boredom with interacting with a machine.
Painting by elephants is a Youtube phenomenon but it’s unclear whether they’re making it up as they go along or just following a script.
But in these videos, there is no direction. Peter the elephant is playing with a tablet computer.
Says the British ‘Technivator Team’, who made the videos:
“This is all real, no film trickery, post-production or hidden cuts — he’s just a very clever elephant.”
Photo credit: Youtube screengrab