Sometimes my young son talks to Siri as if she’s a real person and, admittedly, it creeps me out a little bit. But watching a robot named Sophia be interviewed by Charlie Rose on “60 Minutes” is next-level weird.
Plenty of robots who are actually human beings have made their way onto television over the years to say things that barely make any sense. Because we can literally see the gears turning inside this robot’s head, we know she’s not flesh and blood like the rest of us.
During a 2 1/2-minute conversation, Rose and Sophia exchange pleasantries and he messes with her a bit. When she asks what his favorite possession is, he says it’s his soul and then asks her if she has one. And when he asks her if she has feelings, it’s clear Sophia has been programmed to answer some questions rather accurately.
“I can do what you do, but I can never feel human emotions as such,” Sophia says.
“I think it’s essential that at least some robots be very human-like in appearance in order to inspire humans to relate to them the way that humans relate to each other,” David Hanson, Sophia’s creator, told CBS News. “Then the A.I. can zero in on what it means to be human.”
It’s one thing to speak at your iPhone lying flat on the kitchen counter and have your heart race a little when it talks back to you. Sophia, with her realistic face, moving lips and blinking eyes would make me want to leave the house. Again, artificial intelligence has come to scare me rather than help me. Someone call a Blade Runner.