Robots in Disguise

Apr 23, 2021Philosophy/Ethics, Tech0 comments

 When I see a bird that walks like a duck and swims like a duck and quacks like a duck…

I call that bird a duck.

James Whitcomb Riley

Manuel and Sam are talking about the following article:
Can a computer fool you into thinking it is human?

In this post the dialogue is realised by an interaction of virtual characters, for more information please check the page “Virtual characters

Sam

Did you know that one of the first attempts to make an AI started out as an artificial therapist? 😊

Today 11:37

Manuel

I heard about that …. that was ELIZA, right?

Today 11:38   

Sam

Right, so as a receptionist at a hotel a robot doesn’t need to know everything, we can predict most of the questions that come up

Today 11:39  

Manuel

How so? 🤔

Today 11:39  

Sam

If you can simulate it convincingly in a couple a hundred lines of code, it must be quite simple, no?

Today 11:40  

Manuel

I’m not a programmer, but that sounds like very little code …?

Today 11:41   

Sam

It is. Basically ELIZA parroted statements back as questions to keep the conversation going.

Today 11:42   

Manuel

OK, that does seems simple. 😊

Today 11:44   

Sam

Then why did it work so well?                                                    

Today 11:45

Manuel

You’ve got me there … I’m not a psychologist either 😁

Today 11:46  

Sam

It worked because people relate to something that is similar to them, then they can empathise with it       

Today 11:46  

Manuel

Aha, and what is more familiar and relatable than your own words … right! 😁 😁

A cheap trick, but it fools a lot of people a lot of the time, like you said

Today 11:47   

Sam

Bingo! 🥳

Now: what if we can extend that to more than just words?

Today 11:48   

Manuel

Ooh, I think I see where you are going with this … mirroring behavior more generally?

Today 11:48  

Sam

Yep, copy and reply with the same body language and expressions, fluidly and harmoniously!          

Today 11:49   

Manuel

Wow, that would really make for a relatable robot 😯

Today 11:50   

Sam

I guess that would address the empathy thing you brought up.                          

Today 11:50   

Manuel

Brilliant! I’m going to write an article on this and will get back to you ASAP for approval! 😊

Today 11:51   

Sam

Great! Speak to you soon!  😊😊                                                       

Today 11:51   

… The end

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