Gone are the days of disembodied AI’s like Alexa or Siri. After months of teasing their fans Star Labs, a company backed by Samsung, has officially announced the next generation of the ‘artificial human,’ and it’s called Neon.
At CES on Monday, Jan. 7, Star Labs unveiled the project that features a hyper-realistic algorithm-generated ‘artificial humans’ that “show emotions and intelligence,” so the company claims. Videos of Neon show what the program’s algorithm is capable of generating, which is unbelievable. It is hard to honestly believe that the videos we have seen of Neon are not just real people pretending to be artificial humans.
Star Labs also stated that Neon can “connect and learn more about us, gain new skills, and evolve.” Apparently, the program can display emotions as well as “autonomously create new expressions, new movements, new dialog (even in Hindi), completely different from the original captured data.”
While the purpose of Neon still remains a mystery, the company has strictly stated that Neon is “not an AI assistant” like Google or Alexa, but is instead “simply, a friend.”
In short, and strictly from an observational standpoint, Neon is a computer-generated life-like AI avatar that is supposed to act as a companion. Gives me some serious Her vibes.
While the project itself sounds gimmicky, much like Cleverbot, the tech behind it is serious. Neon’s AI runs off of a Star Labs program called R3, which stands for “Reality, Realtime, Responsive.” R3 offers almost instantaneous responses to any queries or conversational topics. Much unlike Siri, who takes a good minute to respond to your questions… that is if she heard you correctly the first time.
Flying to CES tomorrow, and the code is finally working :) Ready to demo CORE R3. It can now autonomously create new expressions, new movements, new dialog (even in Hindi), completely different from the original captured data. pic.twitter.com/EPAJJrLyjd
— Pranav Mistry (@pranavmistry) January 5, 2020
I feel like if I were in middle school again, this would get me pretty excited. I would show my friends for 30 minutes and then go back to playing Call of Duty. But some interesting possibilities for what Neon could be used to have been thrown out there — making Neon legitimate concierge services in hotels or airports, virtual flight attendants, or cashiers. However, that might go against Star Labs‘ “not a personal assistant” statement.
For now, my interest is piqued. Show me more, Star Labs. Is this the future of AI, or is it just another flashy chatbot.