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The idea that we’d make robots to mimic our dead relatives is rather to miss the point. A more desirable goal is to make soon to be dead relatives into robots so they don’t die – very much the opposite idea in fact. So, this seems to us to fail at the first hurdle of doing something useful:

Swedish scientists believe that artificial intelligence can be harnessed to create ‘fully conscious copies’ of our loved ones after they die, according to Sputnik News.

Scientists are looking for volunteers who are willing to offer up their dead relatives for the study.

They would use AI to reconstruct the voices of those who’ve died to allow family members to communicate with their deceased loved ones.

It’s that fully conscious part which isn’t quite there.

Scientists also want to build robot replicas that look exactly like family members and friends who have died, the report claims.

What’s more, the scientists hope AI can be used to make the robot clones capable of completing more sophisticated tasks.

The robots might be equipped to answer simple questions related to the weather, what time it is and more.

No, really, that’s not what is desired at all, is it? A bad copy that can only answer the simplest questions? That’s just what Granny’s dementia caused before her death, wasn’t it?

Sure, they say that they’ll work on more complex things but that then runs smack into the Turing test. We don’t know how to make an AI indistinguishable from a human just yet. Let alone one that can contain a human.

This is not the first time such an idea has surfaced. Prominent futurist, Dr Michio Kaku has said that humans will be able to upload their minds (memories, personality) to machines in the future and speak to people even after they die.

That’s rather more what the goal is. That we upload to machines and thus don’t die. Although even that is fraught. For the copy left behind in meatspace is still going to die even if the mechanical version lives on. We’re not going to beat death therefore, even if a personality can live forever. A version of that personality is still going to go through that death.

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Quentin VoleBloke In ItalySo Much For SubtletyHector DrummondBniC Recent comment authors

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Nautical Nick
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Nautical Nick

That’s all very well, but what happens when your robot clone elopes with the vacuum cleaner….?

Warren Platts
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Warren Platts

The desire for immortality is pure vanity.

Rhoda Klapp
Member
Rhoda Klapp

A mother-in-law who can nag on despite being dead? hooray.

Gamecock
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Gamecock

You don’t buy someone whose cat died a new cat. Even if it meows like the old one.

bloke in spain
Member
bloke in spain

If you’ve Netflix you may have watched Altered Carbon, which explores the subject. Plotline: Man hires detective to investigate his suicide because he suspects he was murdered…

BniC
Member
BniC

Altered carbon definitely deals
With the dark side of immortality etc.
Another good read on this subject is Lock In by John Scalzi (?) also his Old Mans War which deals with similar issues

Hector Drummond
Member

I’d like to replace a few of my live relatives with simple robots.

So Much For Subtlety
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So Much For Subtlety

The robots might be equipped to answer simple questions related to the weather, what time it is and more. Yeah, I can see some people might think this is an improvement. A robot copy is not the same as an original. You do not have a relationship with your sexbot even if she is programmed to look and sound like your ex. You just don’t. No matter how good the copy is. I think a good rule of thumb is that if an Arnald Schwartenegger film has dealt with this issue more intelligently than you, you should shut up. Over… Read more »

Bloke In Italy
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I cannot for the life of me see how anybody could think this is a good idea.

Surely it is utterly gross?

Quentin Vole
Member
Quentin Vole

As usual, Douglas Adams got there first: “I thought you said you could just read his brain electronically,” protested Ford. “Oh yes,” said Frankie, “but we’d have to get it out first. It’s got to be prepared.” “Treated,” said Benji. “Diced.” “Thank you,” shouted Arthur, tipping up his chair and backing away from the table in horror. “It could always be replaced,” said Benji reasonably, “if you think it’s important.” “Yes, an electronic brain,” said Frankie, “a simple one would suffice.” “A simple one!” wailed Arthur. “Yeah,” said Zaphod with a sudden evil grin, “you’d just have to program it… Read more »