Sexual chats with robots
Sexuality in the Digital Age can mean sexting on smartphones, hookups through Craigslist and Facebook, and transmitting lewd photos like Anthony Weiner or Brett Favre.
But while humans continue to define the do's and don'ts of online lust, a new generation of computer programs may have already figured it out.
The crude connections may signal a "robotic moment" for society where humans begin turning to artificial intelligence to fulfill emotional needs, said Sherry Turkle, director of MIT's Initiative on Society and Self. And that a robot would be a safe choice." Virtual lover Such "seduction by social robots" forms a key theme in Turkle's latest book, "Alone Together: Why We Expect More from Technology and Less from Each Other" (Basic Books, 2011).Dr Devlin also postulates that dolls could be used to treat sex offences and paedophilia."For example, VR has been used, virtual reality has been used to check whether or not sex offenders are likely to reoffend by putting them in a virtual environment."There is a possibility for therapy for this as well."It is not just physical robots that will be part of the sex robot future. The 2013 film starring Joaquin Phoenix and Scarlett Johansson was about a man who falls in love with his smartphone's operating system.In China, a realistic smartphone chat bot called Xiaoice is already a reality, with millions of users logging on for hours to speak to the lifelike female artificial intelligence.Abyss Creations, the maker of life-size sex dolls Real Doll, has told The New York Times they are bringing the future of sex dolls closer by building animatronics into its creations.Kathleen Richardson, a senior research fellow in the ethics of robotics at De Montfort University, started the Campaign Against Sex Robots."I want people to stop thinking about the word 'robot' and think about the word 'property', and what we're being encouraged to do is have relationships with property," she told the ABC's Lateline program.