Never mind donating millions to charity or some fake billionaire giveaway on Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg’s new year resolution is to build himself a robot butler that will be able to look after his kid, control electronics around his house, and help him run his company.
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Zuckerberg’s past “personal challenges” include reading 2 books a month, learning Mandarin and meeting a new person every day. Relatively easy compared to this one.
My personal challenge for 2016 is to build a simple AI to run my home and help me with my work. You can think of it kind of like Jarvis in Iron Man.
Facebook has been working hard on AI systems in general over the years, including ones that can recognise contents of a photo and show it properly on Facebook, like the still-creepy face recognition feature.
Others like Elon Musk and Stephen Hawking aren’t a fan of this approach however, claiming that too much artificial intelligence will overwhelm us and eventually damage humanity (err, looks like we’re already there guys).
Zuckerberg doesn’t think so, though:
I think we can build AI so it works for us and helps us. Some people fear-monger about how AI is a huge danger, but that seems far-fetched to me and much less likely than disasters due to widespread disease, violence, etc.
I’m going to start by exploring what technology is already out there. Then I’ll start teaching it to understand my voice to control everything in our home – music, lights, temperature and so on. I’ll teach it to let friends in by looking at their faces when they ring the doorbell.
I’ll teach it to let me know if anything is going on in Max’s room that I need to check on when I’m not with her.
On the work side, it’ll help me visualize data in VR to help me build better services and lead my organizations more effectively.
I say go for it Mark. Don’t listen to the haters. You’ve set yourself a challenge now you’ve got to see it through. Who wouldn’t want a robot butler that could basically run their whole lives for them? Then we can get on with more important stuff like stuffing our faces and watching TV without having to worry if anyone’s changed the baby’s nappy. Need me a butler robot and need it yesterday.
Bet the guys who worship Mark Zuckerberg as part of their religion will be more thrilled than anyone.