The Idea Incubator/Mebot—A chatbot informed by your life and personality
Imagine your great great granddaughter holding a conversation with you years after your death. A chatbot informed by your life experiences and personality could make this possible. We can call it a “mebot”.
The mebot would draw on records gathered and created of your:
- Favorite stories,
- Favorite jokes,
- Sense of humor,
- Favorite foods, books, music, movies,
- Habits and idiosyncrasies,
- Common expressions and idioms,
- Most influential experiences,
- Heroes and villains,
- Most significant accomplishments,
- Fondest memories,
- Hopes and dreams,
- Regrets, and
- personal messages.
A simple implementation would be a text-based chatbot informed by a knowledge base you create by answering questions on the above topics.
An audio version would use voice recognition and respond to questions with audio recordings of your voice, or with a synthesis of your voice. This could run as a smart speaker application.
Video versions could include still photographs, video clips, avatars, 3D renderings, synthetic media, and ultimately a dynamic 3D reconstruction of you, perhaps captured at various ages.
A basic knowledge base would simply recite your recorded answers to specific questions. A more advance version would rely on your worldview to extrapolate answers (“What would he have said?”) to questions that go beyond those transcribed in the knowledgebase.
A simple service could provide a website that presents questions, records your answers, and assembles this into the chatbot database. Answers could be recorded in text, audio, video, or 3D.
More extensive services could make use of skilled interviewers to develop a more complete and personal record.
Use of the mebot during the client’s lifetime would allow it to learn. Questions that are asked but that had not yet been addressed could be recorded and the client could provide answers. The knowledgebase could be collected and extended through your lifetime.
While this is less than immortality, it does preserve a rich legacy.
Dialogues with LuminariesEdit
These basic concepts can be extended to provide a variety of conversations with celebrities, luminaries, experts, and various wise people.
Responses to requests could use the voice of some popular figure, such as a movie star, recording artist, sports figure, or fashion celebrity. This would allow users to imagine they are conversing with their greatest heroes from popular culture.
Questions could be answered by relevant experts. If you had a question about your favorite team or sports star, the answer could be provided in their voice. Questions about politics, current events, philosophy, science, or other topics could be answered by recognized experts in each field. Audiobooks, podcast materials, biographies, or interview segments could provide the basis for these responses.
Perhaps you would like to gather advice from some wise historical figure. For example, you could ask Abraham Lincoln for advice on a political issue, or converse with Carl Sandburg about poetry and the human condition. The conversation could be structed as a dialogue. Perhaps a Socratic dialogue with Socrates himself would provide some insights.
Here are examples of similar existing technologies.
- Capturing interviews of aging Holocaust survivors. Aging Holocaust survivors now have the chance to record their memories in a way that will allow future generations to literally ask them about their experiences, and see and hear their answers.
- StoryFile is a conversational video creation service that uses video technology to transform one-way videos into two-way interactions.
- Here After is a service that allows people to record the life story of someone you love and share with the whole family through an interactive Life Story Avatar.
- Artificial intelligence project lets Holocaust survivors share their stories forever, 60 Minutes, April 3, 2020. https://www.cbsnews.com/news/artificial-intelligence-holocaust-remembrance-60-minutes-2020-04-03/