In what can only be described as a play right out of the transhumanist playbook, Microsoft has been granted US patent # 10,853,171 B2 on December 1, 2020 for "creating a conversational chat bod of a specific person."
Chat bots themselves are nothing new to AI. We've been dealing with them for years almost any time we call in to either a bank or other service. They used to be incredibly obvious, but with time and technology, they are becoming harder to detect.
This is also not the first time that the idea of basing a chat bot on specific people has made headlines.
In 2016 @Roman was announced on Facebook, the work of Eugenia Kuyda and a team of individuals, using open source code provided by Google to create an AI chat bot based on a friend that had died. They had prepared the program with thousands of lines of text conversations. Through the use of an application named Luka, anyone wishing to engage could do so.
Anyone that has watched the series Black Mirror, described as "an anthology series exploring a twisted, high-tech multiverse where humanity's greatest innovations and darkest instincts collide," likely remember the Season 2 Episode 1 titled "Be Right Back" which originally aired February 11, 2013, where a woman embarks on the same endeavor.
The result from both endeavors was that while some found the chat bots comforting others realize that they are "empty shells" and no substitute for the real person. In both scenarios, the bots were fed with information based on publicly available information- social media posts and more private information that people were willing to volunteer.
"The more it has, the more it's him," Sarah states in "Be Right Back."
Microsoft is looking to do the same thing, whether with common people, celebrities, or historical figures.
The abstract on the patent states:
In aspects, social data (e.g., images, vice data, social media posts, electronic messages, written letter, etc.) about the specific person may be accessed. The social data may be used to create or modify a special index in the theme of the specific person's personality. The special index may be used to train a chat bot to converse in the personality of the specific person. ... In some aspects, a 2D or 3D model of a specific person may be generated using images, depth information, and/or video data associated with the specific person.
Well known Humanist Ray Kurzweil spoke of this very eventuality in his book The Age of Spiritual Machines.
“We’re going to become increasingly non-biological to the point where the non-biological part dominates and the biological part is not important any more,” said Kurzweil. “In fact the non-biological part – the machine part – will be so powerful it can completely model and understand the biological part. So even if that biological part went away it wouldn’t make any difference.”
Over the course of 23 weeks so far, Pastor Billy Crone of Sunrise Bible Church has been teaching a series entitled The A.I. Invasion. Those teachings can be found here, at the bottom of the page for any interested in a more in-depth study on what is really going on with A.I.