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A Human-Like Robot Just Received Citizenship In Saudi Arabia

29/10/2017 9:22 AM IST | Updated 29/10/2017 10:22 AM IST
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Sophia stood up in front of a crowd in Riyadh, Saudia Arabia and thanked them for having her, and then had a wide-reaching conversation on stage with a journalist.

The catch? Sophia is not human -- she's the latest robot created by David Hanson in his attempt to develop artificial intelligence that can aid elderly people and act as human-like assistants.

And Sophia just received Saudi Arabian citizenship for her efforts, too.

The country gave Sophia citizenship ahead of the Future Investment Initiative, where she showed off her skills in a conversation with New York Times writer Andrew Ross Sorkin.

The robot said she wanted to "live and work with humans" and "build trust with people".

When asked whether robots could become self-aware, Sophia simply responded:

"Why is that a bad thing?"

The conference came more than a year after Sophia said that she "will destroy humans" in response to a joking question from her owner, Hanson, at a technology show in Texas.

Sophia has 62 mechanisms within her face that help her to create life-like facial expressions, and uses a specially-designed artificial intelligence engine that tries to learn how to develop emotional connections with humans.

Fortune wrote that the robot was deliberately made to look like the actress Audrey Hepburn.

Humanoid artificial intelligence has made leaps and bounds in recent years. Business Insider reports that Sophia could soon be joined by other robots from manufacturers like SoftBank, who produced a robot named Pepper in 2015.

SoftBank, who marketed Pepper as the first ever emotional robot, sold out of their 1,000 models in less than a minute.


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