Key idea: The key to winning over a skeptical public could be a family of robot “sisters.”
Original author and publication date: Nadia Leigh-Hewitson (CNN) – December 28, 2022
Futurizonte Editor’s Note: So, it seems that the more human AI looks, the more we will accept it. Yet, we seldom accept other humans, even when they truly look human.
From the article:
Artificial intelligence (AI) has become an integral part of our everyday lives, found in everything from social media algorithms to e-commerce and navigation, but not everyone is comfortable with the idea. The key to winning over a skeptical public could be a family of robot “sisters.”
Sophia, Grace and Desdemona are humanoid robots, each programmed with sophisticated AI. The oldest of the three, Sophia, was first activated in 2016 and gained widespread attention, mostly for her looks. Whereas most artificial intelligence operates discretely out of sight, powering things like software and smartphones, Sophia is designed to look like a young woman and gained celebrity status as the face of AI.
In 2017, Sophia was named the United Nations Development Programme’s first Innovation Champion — the first non-human to be given a UN title. In the same year she was granted citizenship by Saudi Arabia.
Since then, she’s been joined by two siblings, all three robots designed by David Hanson, founder of Hanson Robotics. However, their AI “brains” were engineered by Ben Goertzel, former chief scientist at the company, and now CEO of blockchain-based AI company SingularityNET.
“AI mostly exists behind the scenes, in the form of algorithms doing various sorts of pattern recognition and cognition that are hard for people to understand,” Goertzel tells CNN. “The purpose of these robots was to be an interface with the AI world and the human world.”
“The face is one of the primary ways humans express emotions and connect with each other,” he adds. “If you have an AI that you can look in the eye and it smiles at you, that gives us a subjective feeling of connection.”