Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg has said he intends to build his own AI robot butler in 2016, comparing it with the fictional Jarvis machine in the Iron Man films.
Zuckerberg said in a post on Facebook that the idea is to create something that can understand his voice and can be used to control every aspect of his house, such as music, lights and the temperature.
“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,” he wrote.
“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.”
Zuckerberg also said he plans to use Facebook’s Oculus Rift technology so that the ‘butler’ can visualise data, which could be used to help it better understand key information to manage Facebook even more effectively.
“This should be a fun intellectual challenge to code this for myself. I'm looking forward to sharing what I learn over the course of the year,” he added.
Thousands of people responded to the post, asking numerous questions of Zuckerberg, ranging from what he intends to call the butler, to whether he is concerned that AI could pose a risk to the human race, something he dismissed.
“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.”
Zuckerberg also revealed that he used to dabble in building games, explaining that he made his own conquest-style game, although it lacked flair.
“I used to build little games for myself when I was in middle school and high school, but most really good games require good art and graphics, and that was never my thing,” he wrote.
“My favourite game I built for myself was a cross between Risk and Civilization set in the Roman Empire. You had to play against this AI version of Julius Caesar to take over Rome. It was a lot of fun.”
The ambitious goal comes amid several high-profile projects at Facebook, ranging from a foray into virtual reality, to the firm's Internet.org drone plane to beam the internet to remote regions from gliders in the sky.
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