WIT SINGAPORE 2019: FINDING LOVE IN THE ARMS OF A ROBOT

<i>WiT Singapore 2019: Finding love in the arms of a robot</i><br />
16/10/2019, by Yon Heong Tung, in Featured, News, Regions, Sectors, Social
16/10/2019, by Yon Heong Tung

In the 1999 film Bicentennial Man, Robin Williams plays a robot, Andrew, who is gifted with the capacity of emotion and creativity. Andrew eventually falls in love with a human lady and decides to marry her. When he petitions a regulatory body to recognise their matrimony, however, he is rejected as they were concerned that he could not age and this would spark an upheaval in society. Andrew then re-engineers his body so that it would deteriorate naturally with time, and then eventually die, thus making him fully human.

Bicentennial Man isn’t the first piece of art to explore the existential question of what it means to be human, and whether man-made machines can truly become sentient autonomous beings, and whether they will one day be placed on the same footing as us homo sapiens. Famous science fiction authors like Isaac Asimov have written hypothetical scenarios where humans are made to live side by side highly intelligent robots. Will there be chaos? Will they rule over us? How do we govern them?

These are but some of the many deep questions that our society needs to address as AI and robotics converge to produce artificial beings who are becoming more life-like. Robots have already bested our finest chess masters and have made thousands of administrative and clerical work redundant with their complex algorithms and lightning-speed processing power.

So what if one day, they are able to replace our spouse as well? Are romantic love and sexual desire just human wants that require a reciprocal response from a willing party, no matter what form it takes — even if it isn’t human?

At WiT Singapore 2019, Professor Adrian David Cheok, Director, Imagineering Institute, Malaysia, sought to address this issue – specifically on the topic of whether humans should be allowed to marry robots.

“Robots are going to engage with relationships with humans. Humans will love robots and treat them as partners,” Cheok declared.

Robots have a lot of desirable qualities. For one, their image, personality and body can be easily moulded to fit your personal desires. Imagine a ‘love robot’ that looks, moves and talks exactly like your favourite celebrity, or creepier yet, your crush. It is not a far-fetched idea, there are already prototypes that exist.

They can also easily be programmed with other positive ‘emotional’ attributes such as patience, kindness, honesty, uncomplaining, the list goes on. In essence, they can become the perfect partner.

The question now comes down to whether we as a society should recognise human-robot marriages. Whether man and machine can become one in, umm, flesh and silicon-covered robot parts.

Professor Cheok, Imagineering Institute, said creating the perfect partner is totally possible with software.

Human-robot marriages shouldn’t be controversial

Cheok argued that such marriages should not be controversial. Up to the late 1960s, the US still banned interracial marriages, he said. And homosexual unions were only first recognised in Copenhagen in 1989.

Traditional religious, cultural, and ethical values dictate that marriage is only valid between a man and a woman; but this notion is fast becoming archaic in many societies. More people, especially the younger generation, are opening up to new concepts of love, marriage and sexual identity. Can a transgender female marry a transsexual male? It wasn’t too long ago when this would be openly-ridiculed in public. In today’s world, however, you wouldn’t have to dig hard to find a supportive community, on the internet at least.

But how would a union between a human and a robot affect the upbringing of their child? (Let’s just assume for simplicity’s sake that robots and human spouses will adopt, because the idea of robots conceiving a child would just blow my mind). Would the child grow normally in the absence of a traditional nuclear family unit?

There are now some statistics that demonstrate that the old school mom-and-dad social unit may not be as critical to the healthy development of a child as one may think. Cheok cited a 2006 Pediatrics journal, which claimed that there is “ample evidence to show that children raised by same-gender parents fare as well as those raised by heterosexual parents.”

If two loving men or women can raise a healthy kid in their home, why not a loving man/woman and a robot? “Good parenting can happen as long as both parents are conscientious and nurturing. There is no reason why a sophisticated robot in the next few decades cannot be a partner in the provision of good parenting”, said Cheok.

Can robots consent?

For any marriage to take place, however, both parties need to consent to it. Consenting does not necessarily mean both parties have to be well informed, argued Cheok. He said that robots are capable of instrumental reasoning and are thus capable of deciding whether they want to marry.

“If the robot appears, by its behaviour, both actions and words, to understand the meaning of marriage, then we should accept that the robot [actually] understands marriage,” said Cheok.

Still, there are a ton of questions that need to be addressed in the future. Can humans unilaterally terminate a marriage contract? Can robots actually feel an emotional heartbreak, or are they only programmed to do so based on their manufacturers?

Or perhaps robots, by acquiring and integrating humanity’s vast quantum of knowledge, are merely displaying their interpretation of human behaviour. Marriage is seen universally as one of the most joyous occasions that will happen in a person’s lifetime. Is the robot partner merely replicating that feeling of exuberance because its processor has aggregated an immense history of human behaviour stretching back through time and across innumerable cultural practices, to arrive at an approximation of the appropriate human response?

Can a robot truly feel, as we humans like to say, “butterflies in its stomach”?

These are hard questions to tackle and they will not be resolved anytime soon. But we as a society can strive to be less judgemental of unorthodox unions, as long as they are between two consenting adults — whether they be of different sexual orientations, or whether they are made of flesh and blood, or steel. As The Beatles famously proclaimed in a song: “All you need is love”.

Whatever the case, Cheok predicted at WiT that human-robot marriages will be made legal by 2050.

Source: https://www.webintravel.com/wit-singapore-2019-adrian-cheok-imagineering-institute-robots-marriage/

Blockchain Centre梦想课堂探讨V.U.C.A时代的数字科技力量

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2019年07月12日 22:44 来源:中新网上海
中新网上海新闻7月12日电 Blockchain Centre Shanghai 12日联手企业管理层、技术领域的专家以及智慧创新技术团队汇聚在沪西愚园路的梦想课堂,探讨V.U.C.A时代的数字科技力量。

V.U.C.A。世界中每个元素都代表着对新时代的预见性和洞察力,时刻提醒着组织和个人要提高在企业中的行动力。人力资源管理与数字经济落地应用如何完美结合以及顶尖科技与企业管理会碰撞出怎样的火花都是现阶段企业在探索行动力提升这一命题中最应该思考的问题。

来自 HR 私董会的企业管理者与现场观众面对面探讨了新时代下的 HR理念以及如何进行更加智慧化的人才管理,阐述了科技对于人才潜能激发的重要性。

世界顶尖机器人交互专家-Adrian David Cheok阁下为观众讲解了他所熟悉的技术领域——混合现实、多感官互联网交流。人类可以使用所有感官开发新型通信环境,包括触觉、味觉和嗅觉,听起来或许不可思议,但却是在当前科技水平层面可以展望的。

BastionPay 团队则带来了其率先针对员工激励这一应用场景推出的BastionPay Plus员工区块链激励解决方案。这一方案旨在将员工的行为价值化,把每个员工的日常行为记录下来,将数据上链,并根据员工按时出勤、工作成绩、达到一定工龄等标准来发放内部凭证,满足年轻一代员工在工作中获得的价值感以及公司归属感。数字化管理推动员工激励的新机制,最终能够实现员工和企业的长期双赢。(完)

http://www.sh.chinanews.com/kjjy/2019-07-12/59823.shtml?from=groupmessage&isappinstalled=0

Professor Adrian David Cheok AM awarded Order of Australia

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The GOVERNOR GENERAL OF AUSTRALIA, Representative of Her Majesty the Queen Elizabeth II, has awarded AUSTRALIA’S highest honor the ORDER OF AUSTRALIA to Adrian David Cheok. It was announced by Queen Elizabeth on June 10th during the Queen’s Birthday Celebrations. Adrian David Cheok is awarded the prize for his contribution to international education and research. A brief bio of Adrian David Cheok follows:

Adrian David Cheok is Director of the Imagineering Institute, Malaysia, Full Professor at i-University Tokyo, Visiting Professor at Raffles University, Malaysia, Visiting Professor at University of Novi Sad-Serbia, on Technical faculty “Mihailo Pupin”, Serbia, Faculty of Ducere Business School, and CEO of Nikola Tesla Technologies Corporation.

He is Founder and Director of the Mixed Reality Lab, Singapore. He was formerly Professor of Pervasive Computing, University of London, Full Professor at Keio University, Graduate School of Media Design and Associate Professor in the National University of Singapore. He has previously worked in real-time systems, soft computing, and embedded computing in Mitsubishi Electric Research Labs, Japan

Matt McMullen, CEO of Realbotix, to deliver keynote speech at Love and Sex with Robots conference

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

29 May 2018

Following its success in London, the International Congress on Love and Sex with Robots will hold its fourth conference at the University of Montana in the United States on 13 – 14 December 2018.

Matt McMullen, CEO, artist and design director of Realbotix, will be the keynote speaker at the conference. He will be delivering a speech on the topic of “Artificial Intelligence, Robotics, and Intimacy: A new Alternative form of relationship”

For the past 20 years, McMullen has been creating “The World’s Finest Love Dolls”, as well as undertaking multiple custom projects along the way. He started Abyss Creations, the manufacturer of Realdoll, out of his garage in 1997. McMullen’s dolls have popped up on more than 20 television shows, and co-starred in 10 films. Now, he focuses on integrating cutting-edge technology with silicone doll artistry and believes that AI driven robots can become companions and partners to human beings, and can connect with us in ways that are often overlooked when considering these technologies.

The Love and Sex with Robots congress is the only annual academic event on the topic of human-robot intimate relationships. The congress was founded and chaired by David Levy, author of the eponymous New York Times bestseller “Love and Sex with Robots”, and Adrian David Cheok, Professor of Pervasive Computing at City, University of London and Director of Imagineering Institute, Malaysia.

ACE 2018 is Now Calling for Submissions

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ACE 2018 is calling for submissions to its 15th conference to be held at the University of Montana, USA, on 10-12 December 2018.

We seek all submissions on Affective Computing, Augmented, Mixed and Virtual Reality, Educational and Fitness Games, Game Design, Interactive Storytelling, Mobile and Ubiquitous Entertainment, Sound and Music Design, Tangible Interfaces etc. A full list of topics is available on our website: http://ace2018.info/topics/

Papers may range from 2 to 20 pages long, in the Springer CS Proceedings format. Deadline for submission is 15th July, 2018 (GMT). Detailed instructions for submission format is found on http://ace2018.info/call-for-submissions/.

This year, our keynote speaker is Professor Peter Gray, research professor of psychology at Boston College who has conducted and published research in neuroendocrinology, developmental psychology, anthropology, and education. He is author of an internationally acclaimed introductory psychology textbook (Psychology, Worth Publishers, now in its 8th edition), which views all of psychology from an evolutionary perspective. His recent research focuses on the role of play in human evolution and how children educate themselves, through play and exploration, when they are free to do so. He has expanded on these ideas in his book, Free to Learn: Why Unleashing the Instinct to Play Will Make Our Children Happier, More Self-Reliant, and Better Students for Life (Basic Books). He also authors a regular blog called Freedom to Learn, for Psychology Today magazine. He earned his undergraduate degree at Columbia College and Ph.D. in biological sciences, many years ago, at the Rockefeller University. His own current play includes kayaking, long distance bicycling, backwoods skiing, and vegetable gardening. http://ace2018.info/keynote/

Adrian David Cheok on virtual senses for the internet

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30. March 2017

https://it-gipfelblog.hpi-web.de/interview_post/adrian-david-cheok-on-virtual-senses-for-the-internet/

 

Name: Adrian David Cheok
Position: Director of the Imagineering Institute Malaysia, Chair Professor of Pervasive Computing at City University London, Founder and Director of the Mixed Reality Lab Singapore
Thema: Virtual senses for the internet

 

Nowadays, we mostly perceive our digital world by viewing text and images or hearing audio. But what about the rest of our senses?

Adrian Cheok, Director of the Imagineering Institute Malaysia, founded the Mixed Reality Lab in Singapore and tries to integrate the rest of our senses, like smelling or tasting, into our digital experience. „What do we need digital smells and tastes for anyway?“, one might ask.

Those senses are of big importance for influencing emotion. Every day we can experience how smells can change our mood, e.g. when eating a delicious meal.

The possibilities for using digital senses are widely spread: games, films, messaging and communication over social networks or telephone, but also commercial usage like advertisement.

Cheok’s Mixed Reality Lab develops devices that stimulate our senses with electrical signals, „because we can’t send the chemicals over the internet“, that are normally needed for these body-reactions, explains Prof. Cheok. As he puts it, we already live in our own „analog virtual reality“ with our brain as a device to perceive the world surrounding us. That’s why he believes that the step to a digital virtual reality will not be a very big one.

Might there be a danger in replacing our „real life“ with digital virtual reality?
According to Cheok, differences will become smaller, „but society will adapt“. Kissing or marrying a robot in the future may be as normal as human marriage today.

Nonetheless, the focus of his research is not in replacing our life with digital experiences, but in expanding the analog life by adding digital impressions.

 

Adrian David Cheok Keynote Speaker The title is “Love and Sex with Robots” at IT Innovation Day 2017, Amersfoort, Netherlands – 28/09/2017

Professor Adrian David Cheok will give a keynote speech at IT Innovation Day on 28 September 2017, in Amersfoort, Netherlands.

Title: Love and Sex with Robots
Time: 14:33, 28 September 2017
Location: Prodentfabriek, Amersfoort, Netherlands

In his speech, Professor Cheok will look at the tangible aspect (touch) of technology, and the ways in which this will contribute to an overall experience for people, including sexual behaviour. Adrian Cheok will outline a more controversial view of the future, along with how tangible technology will enhance experiences at all levels of human behaviour. When is good, good enough, real enough, and how can quality be improved? Adrian will also share his latest tech inventions with the public.

https://itinnovationday.nl/spreker/6/adrian-cheok

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