Originally posted July 18, 2017
Here is an excerpt:
I dream of creating a Dadbot—a chatbot that emulates not a children’s toy but the very real man who is my father. And I have already begun gathering the raw material: those 91,970 words that are destined for my bookshelf.
The thought feels impossible to ignore, even as it grows beyond what is plausible or even advisable. Right around this time I come across an article online, which, if I were more superstitious, would strike me as a coded message from forces unseen. The article is about a curious project conducted by two researchers at Google. The researchers feed 26 million lines of movie dialog into a neural network and then build a chatbot that can draw from that corpus of human speech using probabilistic machine logic. The researchers then test the bot with a bunch of big philosophical questions.
“What is the purpose of living?” they ask one day.
The chatbot’s answer hits me as if it were a personal challenge.
“To live forever,” it says.
The article is here.
Yes, I saw the Black Mirror episode using a similar theme.