This is very “Black Mirror”: Artificial Intelligence App Lets You Talk to the Dead

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Talking to the dead may seem like something out of a fictional or supernatural movie, but now it is really possible to “talk” with those who have died.

And no, it is not a review of a new episode of the series “Black Mirror”. This is the proposal of a technology company based in California, in the United States.

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HereAfter AI wants to enable communication between the living and the dead by creating a digital version of someone, combining voice and advanced artificial intelligence tools.

Fiction x Reality

The application developed by the company will work as a biographer. Gradually, the person answers hundreds of questions that are asked to create a “virtual self”.

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Questions such as “Who was your first love?”, “What is your favorite food?”, “Tell me about an experience that changed your life” appear on the screen and the user responds via audio.

Then the app categorizes and organizes all the stories about childhood, relationships and personality, for example, and develops and perfects the virtual version of the person.

In the episode “Be Right Back”, from the British science fiction series Black Mirror, something similar happens. A young woman finds her life turned upside down when her partner dies and leaves her pregnant.

She ends up experimenting with a cutting-edge online service that allows people to contact the deceased, creating the person digitally from material provided by personal social networks.

The protagonist communicates with her partner through audio calls. Later in the episode, she ends up getting a physical version of her husband made out of synthetic meat.

It is also possible to send photos, videos and all kinds of documents that help make the “product” even better so that family and friends can access it in the future, when, eventually, the person is no longer present.

In an article in the MIT Technology Review, a publication by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology that is a reference in the area, the “immortality” tool was considered.

In an excerpt from the text, one can read that: “(…) the ethics of creating a digital version of someone are complex. (…) technology, for some, can be alarming and frightening. (…) talking to these digital versions can even prolong the mourning and take the person out of reality”.

While other publications such as The Wasington Post called the app “the next step in the human quest for immortality”.

For those who don’t want to “embark” on this on their own, access to the application can be given as a gift by children or grandchildren and the questions can be customized for each person. Thus, a perfect “virtual self” is born that will live forever.

Source: CNN Brasil

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