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Saturday, November 01, 2008

Will Computers Laugh? #1

Note: As a part of my AI Course, I presented a seminar on 'Humour research in AI'. These are the after-effects. :-)

Humour is an innately human concept. What differentiates humans from a computer, among many other things, is the fact that the human being 'enjoys' jokes; computers only 'understands' jokes.

Humour is specific to a person and to a time. There are jokes for different categories of people, to be cracked at different places. (Imagine cracking a fart joke at a corporate meeting.)

If I see someone wearing a gaudy dress, I will laugh. Will everyone laugh? Not really - some of us don't pay attention to the details of a person's appearance! (*wink*)

If a computer has to laugh, a computer has to know something is humorous with all these subtle aspects of time and place.

So, what will happen when a computer learns how to laugh? Here:
  • Your robot will be your perfect chatmate. She'll crack jokes for you - and laugh at your jokes.
  • Note this. Your robot sees you falling over a banana peel, understands that it's funny and laughs.
  • You are filling up a form online where you fill your name as some garbage string (say, 'asdf'). Imagine the status message, 'asdf, hmmm.. aren't you happy with the name your mom gave you?'
In a nutshell, humour research that has been pursued by AI enthusiasts aims at taking computers a step closer to the ideal intelligent agents - the human beings.

The trend of computer technology till now has been 'computerization' of tasks that are otherwise done by humans. The trend now is 'humanization' of the way computers do these tasks. That's my flashline:

"The past is computerization, the future is humanization!"

1 comment:

  1. Great imagination.

    The degree(intensity) of laughter
    should be preset on the basis of degree and the type humour.