Earlier this year, I watched Microsoft roll out its AI assistant Sydney – It seemed like just another version of ChatGPT. However, as the New York Times found out, it became something entirely different. Sydney had a dark side, and when you dove in, you found something quite human about the way she conversed. This was something new, and different. It was only a matter of time before Microsoft pulled the plug on those human qualities; they would never mesh with the kind of voice a large corporation needs to protect its brand. But I was left bedazzled, and with a sense that we had just seen the future before our eyes.
Up until very recently, we have only experienced computers as machines: With an input you get a deterministic output. Our relationship with machines extends to them doing what we want. On the other hand, our experience of being around other people goes far beyond that...
Continue reading →