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AI Entertainment

An OS You'll Love? AI Experts Weigh In On Her 175

theodp writes "Weighing in for the WSJ on Spike Jonze's Oscar-nominated, futuristic love story Her (parodies), Stephen Wolfram — whose Wolfram Alpha drives the AI-like component of Siri — thinks that an operating system like Samantha as depicted in the film isn't that far off. In Her, OS Samantha and employee Theodore Twombly have a relationship that appears to exhibit all the elements of a typical romance, despite the OS's lack of a physical body. They talk late into the night, relax on the beach, and even double date with friends. Both Wolfram and Google director of research Peter Norvig (who hadn't yet seen the film) believe this type of emotional attachment isn't a big hurdle to clear. 'People are only too keen, I think, to anthropomorphize things around them,' explained Wolfram. 'Whether they're stuffed animals, Tamagotchi, things in videogames, whatever else.' By the way, why no supporting actor nomination for Jonze's portrayal of foul-mouthed animated video game character Alien Child?"
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An OS You'll Love? AI Experts Weigh In On Her

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  • CLAMP! (Score:5, Interesting)

    by dosius ( 230542 ) <> on Tuesday January 28, 2014 @09:09AM (#46089927) Journal

    Give it an android body and you got the PCs from Chobits.

  • by sapphire wyvern ( 1153271 ) on Tuesday January 28, 2014 @09:25AM (#46090013)
    I think Robin Hanson's commentary on the movie's lack of internal consistency is valid. I don't think Slashdot supports spoiler-hiding, so I'll just leave a link rather than quoting plot-relevant sections of the post. But his conclusion is:

    This is somewhat like a story of a world where kids can buy nukes for $1 each at drug stores, and then a few kids use nukes to dig a fun cave to explore, after which all the world’s nukes are accidentally misplaced, end of story. Might make an interesting story, but bizarre as a projection of a world with $1 nukes sold at drug stores. []

  • by kaizendojo ( 956951 ) on Tuesday January 28, 2014 @09:30AM (#46090053)
    I wanted to dislike this movie, but it actually wasn't bad at all. It's even more intresting if you compare it to "Lost in Translation"; another movie about romance post separation. Intrestingly enough, these two movies were two different takes on the same subject matter by a former couple, Spike Jonze and Sofia Copolla. Viewed from that perspective the comparison is even more interesting.
  • human beings (Score:0, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 28, 2014 @10:31AM (#46090401)

    Was there ever a question? It's painfully obvious that some human beings fall in "love" (as in, romantic love) with things they ought not (animals, family members, members of their own sex), so why would it be shocking that some deviant humans will (and do) have romantic feelings for inanimate objects? I'm looking forward to watching these people rise up and fight for their right to marry inanimate objects. That will be fun.

  • Re:Stupidity... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by SuricouRaven ( 1897204 ) on Tuesday January 28, 2014 @10:44AM (#46090487)

    I can easily see an AI-like interface being programmed with at least the appearance of emotions in order to improve interactions with humans. It wouldn't take long for the operators of an AI-driven telephone customer services agent to work out that an appearance of empathy leads to improved customer satisfaction. Only way that differs from the real thing is that the fake-empathy would never be allowed to alter the business decisions made at a lower level: It doesn't matter how much the AI appears to feel for your difficulty, if the company policy is no refund then it's not going to make an exception for you.

  • by mounthood ( 993037 ) on Tuesday January 28, 2014 @11:25AM (#46090795)

    Quote from the bottom of my Slashdot page:

    The use of anthropomorphic terminology when dealing with computing systems is a symptom of professional immaturity. -- Edsger Dijkstra

  • Re:Stupidity... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by jbolden ( 176878 ) on Tuesday January 28, 2014 @11:48AM (#46090981) Homepage

    I've been seeing slow but steady progress. Today we have robotic systems capable of operating at the level of a insect, including the very hard detection problem in production and in use. That didn't exist a generation ago. We are decomposing more and more areas of the mind.

    As the saying went in the 1990s. Today we can program computers that can beat the world chess champion. We still can't program a computer that can walk into a room and find the chessboard. 20 years later that's starting to change we are pretty close to being able to find the chessboard.

"I'm not afraid of dying, I just don't want to be there when it happens." -- Woody Allen