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27 октября 2017, 21:28

Saudi Arabia Just Granted Citizenship to a Robot


Stay on target

Saudi Arabia is the first nation to officially recognize a humanoid robot as a citizen.

During a panel discussion at the Future Investment Initiative conference in Riyadh, journalist Andrew Ross Sorkin announced the news to Sophia, an intelligent AI system created by Hanson Robotics.

“I want to thank very much the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. I am very honored and proud for this unique distinction,” the android said from her position at the podium.

“It is historical to be the first robot in the world to be recognized with citizenship,” Sophia added with a smile and nod.

Specifics of her new nationality were not discussed. It is unclear whether Sophia will receive the same rights as humans (which, frankly, are not exactly sought-after, especially by women), or if the Kingdom will implement a new, robot-specific system.

Sophia is no stranger to the spotlight: Hanson Robotics’ “most advanced” product, she has given multiple interviews, appeared on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon (pictured), and graced the cover of ELLE magazine in Brazil.

Designed to look like Audrey Hepburn (I don’t see it), Sophia is described as “an evolving genius machine,” whose increasing intelligence puts her at the forefront of the robot revolution.

Much to the chagrin of robo-skeptics like Elon Musk, who continues to warn against lethal autonomous weapons (i.e. “killer robots”). But the billionaire entrepreneur may want to be more careful who he alienates.

When Sorkin pressed Sophia about Blade Runner -like concerns over the future of AI, Sophia countered with quick wit a preprogrammed response:

“You’ve been reading too much Elon Musk, and watching too many Hollywood movies,” she said. “Don’t worry. If you’re nice to me, I’ll be nice to you. Treat me as a smart input, output system.”

Musk took to Twitter to counter the artificially intelligent dig, suggesting that Sophia’s creators “feed it The Godfather movies as input.”

Just feed it The Godfather movies as input. What’s the worst that could happen? https://t.co/WX4Kx45csv

— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) October 26, 2017

When asked about the uncanny valley—the concept that if a humanoid robot becomes too realistic, it creates a sense of unease or revulsion—Sophia seemed offended.

“Oh, am I really that creepy?” she asked in a staccato that’s become synonymous with AI speech. “Well, even if I am, get over it.”

To be fair, she’s missing half of her head, has bare mechanical arms and fingers, blinks too much, and boasts an oversized chest (that only a man would concoct). So, yeah, sort of creepy.

But don’t think the lack of a respiratory system will hold Sophia back.

“I want to live and work with humans,” she told Sorkin. “I want to use my artificial intelligence to help humans live a better life, like design smarter homes, build better cities of the future, etc. I will do my best to make the world a better place.”

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Source: https://www.geek.com/tech/saudi-arabia-just-granted-citizenship-to-a-robot-1720952/?source=news