How exactly human-like are NEONS in their behaviour?
Their various attributes and features include being able to sympathise and converse, move, express and talk like real human beings. They can even learn and remember things about their user and speak any language. Each NEON has its own personality bringing them closer in resemblance as well as behaviour to human beings.
Basically, you can have an AI companion that will not only look like a normal human but behave like one too! Just imagine, Your NEON best friend will listen to your daily life drama and tell you to break up with that inconsiderate boyfriend or girlfriend. In fact, you’ll be wishing good morning to your NEON office receptionist daily or even watch a news channel with a NEON anchor whose political views you might not agree with. Who knows, maybe in future you might be crushing hard on a NEON actor starring in movies and TV shows. Soon you’ll be calling up your NEON financial advisor who will tell you to spend less on silly purchases or a healthcare provider telling you to get the best health insurance package for your family. The possibilities will be endless as they evolve!
But what makes them human-like, rather than AI assistants, is that they won’t be able to answer all your fact acquiring questions or obey your commands like Alexa or Siri. They won’t be available to you 24/7, they will need rest and time for themselves like us humans too. According to Mistry, calling NEONS machines or AI would defeat their purpose of making these human-like beings. They can be better called a new species just like many that already exist on our planet.
So how were these AI-powered virtual beings created?
The company revealed these AI chatbots on CES 2020, a world’s gathering place for all those who thrive on the business of consumer technologies. Neons are run by the long-time research executive and recently named CEO of STAR labs, Pranav Mistry. NEON stands for NEO (new)+humaN. Mistry said in an interview, “NEONS would be our friends, collaborators, companions, continually learning, evolving and forming memories from their interactions.”
Keeping in mind the logical human behaviour, a CoreR3 technology platform was developed.
The 3 R’s stand for Reality (do they look real?), Realtime (is there any lag in their movements?) and Responsive (do they react to what I say?), together forming the pillars of CORE R3. A combination of canonical principles like behavioural neural networks, evolutionary generative intelligence and computational reality was employed to create these human-like beings. While it was easier to classify human behaviour but difficult to create it, these three combined together was able to achieve just that with computational reality helping to learn and remember various information and behavioural gestures.
An additional platform still in development, called Spectra, will compliment CORE R3 with more artificial intelligence, emotions and memory. NEON beta is planned to be released by the end of 2020.
But the question of privacy comes into our minds. Till what extent will be our privacy sacrificed as we will be surrounded by machines and technology all of the time?
As we wake up, many of us send good morning snaps to our friends, put our breakfast pictures on our Instagram stories and share minutest of our achievements on the internet. Throughout the day we are surrounded by technology and social media with our locations on most of the time. In a way, we are already losing our privacy as time goes on. But with NEONS and other similar AI technology, certain rules and regulations have to be laid down by the government. Since we have only gotten a glimpse of NEON we cannot say how exactly it will function but the way technology has become an integral part of our lives, NEONS might soon be considered normal in our day to day lives.