May 7, 2009
Robot online @ Facebook and looking for friends
Friend invitation extended to John Connor. Depending on how you feel about robots, this is either a major step forward or a sign of the apocalypse. A month-long experiment is going to be run on Facebook where a robot, complete with a profile, will be used to see if humans are willing to make friends with the machine. The experiment is being run by Nikolaos Mavridis and the United Arab Emirates University’s Interactive Robots and Media Laboratory (IRML), which explains the bot’s name and appearance. Details can be found on the IRML website and a paper is available (PDF) from arXiv.org.
Technical difficulties. Of course, to make friends with Ibn, you need to be registered with Facebook, then find the right Ibn Sina to befriend. I’ve made an attempt to register to see if this is for real, but something is fubar with their registration system. Maybe others are trying to make friends with the robot as well. I’ll keep trying and let you know if it ends well, or if we give birth to Skynet.