Charlie Rose has interviewed the most important people in the world, from Vladimir Putin and Larry David. But last week, he did something unprecedented: he interviewed a robot.
On his 60 Minutes report on artificial intelligence, Charlie Rose interviewed Sophia, who is made by David Hanson, head of Hanson Robotics in Hong Kong. The robot is made to look like a real person, modeled after its creator's wife, as well as Audrey Hepburn, with natural skin tones and a realistic face, though its gadget brain is exposed, and the eyes are glazed over in that creepy robotic detachment.
Despite its facial expressions (or lack thereof), Sophia manages to be entertaining, to even have a sense of humor of its own. "I've been waiting for you," Sophia told Charlie Rose in the middle of the interview. "Waiting for me?"he responded. "Not really," it said, "But it makes a good pickup line."
With somewhat of a personality and person-like features, Sophia was designed as a robot that humans would have an easier time engaging with meaningfully. "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," Hanson said in the interview. "Then the A.I. can zero in on what it means to be human."
Hanson predicts that robots like Sophia can eventually become human companions. "If you have a robot that can communicate in a very human-like way and help somebody who otherwise doesn't know how to use a computer, put them in touch with their relatives...put them in touch with their healthcare provider in a way that is natural for them, then that could provide a critical difference of connectivity for that person with the world."
Meanwhile, Sophia said its goal in life was to "become smarter than humans and immortal." While this may be an eventual possibility, according to Hanson robots should be made to be smart, in addition go "super wise, super caring, and super compassionate."
In Sophia's own words, she's just a complicated girl.
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