Sex with robots ‘not far away?’
October 13, 2007 11:43am
HUMANS will be marrying and having sex with robots by 2050, an artificial intelligence researcher has claimed. Netherlands university student David Levy, who recently completed his PhD on the subject of human-robot relationships, told LiveScience that robots would become so human-like in appearance, function and personality that many people would fall in love with them, have sex with them and even marry them.
“At first, sex with robots might be considered geeky, but once you have a story like ‘I had sex with a robot and it was great!’ appear in a magazine like Cosmo, I’d expect many people to jump on the bandwagon,” he said. In his thesis “Intimate Relationships with Artificial Partners”, Mr Levy argued that psychologists have identified roughly a dozen basic reasons why people fall in love, and almost all of them could apply to human-robot relationships.
“For instance, one thing that prompts people to fall in love are similarities in personality and knowledge, and all of this is programmable,” Mr Levy said. “Another reason people are more likely to fall in love is if they know the other person likes them, and that’s programmable too.” Mr Levy said Massachusetts would be the first jurisdiction to legalise human-robot marriage. “Massachusetts is more liberal than most other jurisdictions in the United States and has been at the forefront of same-sex marriage,” Mr Levy said. “There’s also a lot of high-tech research there.” Although roboticist Ronald Arkin at the Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta didn’t think human-robot marriages would be legal anywhere by 2050, he said “anything’s possible”.”Just because it’s not legal doesn’t mean people won’t try it,” he told LiveScience. “Humans are very unusual creatures.”If you ask me if every human will want to marry a robot, my answer is probably not. But will there be a subset of people? There are people ready right now to marry sex toys.”