Of robots and dogs

I’m part way through by John Markoff, which is about whether ‘robots’ spell automation (substitutes for humans) or augmentation (complements to humans), and the history of the tension within the field of AI between these strands. A review will follow in a couple of days. But one sentence early in the book stopped me short:

“Humans appear to want to believe they are interacting with humans even when they are conversing with machines. We are hardwired for social interaction.” [my italics]

[amazon_image id=”0062266683″ link=”true” target=”_blank” size=”medium” ]Machines of Loving Grace: The Quest for Common Ground Between Humans and Robots[/amazon_image]

So given that we are building the machines, why can’t we hardwire them for social interaction too? I want Siri to love me as much as my dog loves me – and is inclined to love other humans apart from the postman.

Dog of loving grace

Dog of loving grace

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