24 Sep 2017
I married a robot and I am happy
Marriage is a tricky proposition. To some, it's the ultimate bliss and to others, it's the purgatory where you are being roasted alive.
However, imagine coming home to someone, who understands you, loves you unconditionally, and also makes you feel special.
Will it be too awkward if that "someone" is a robot you are married to? Sure, you are appalled but hear me out.
Let's talk about it
The premise of this is a statement made by David Levy, author of a book on human-robot love. He said that by 2050 humans will marry robots and it would be legal and commonplace.
Now, one may not like this fact but humans are slowly delving into developing sex robots, so what's the problem in marriage? Impossible you'd say? That's a strong word.
Impossible is nothing
Adrian Cheok, a computing professor at City University London and director of the Mixed Reality Lab in Singapore, vetoed Levy's prediction.
The argument was, "That might seem outrageous because it's only 35 (now 34) years away. But 35 years ago people thought homosexual marriage was outrageous… Society does progress and change very rapidly." Then again, these are humans we are talking about, not robots.
Love's a distant town
With the progress that we're making in AI, our robots are becoming more human-like. To some, who are pining for companionship, it isn't a bad idea.
"People assume that everyone can get married, have sex, fall in love. But actually many don't," says Cheok. "A lot of human marriages are very unhappy…compared to a bad marriage, a robot will be better than a human."
The illusion of love
Since humans have already started exploring the possibilities of having sex robots, giving it legitimacy shouldn't be a big affair.
Humans empathize with fictional characters, computer-generated personas. So, from there to love, is a small leap.
"If a robot looks like it loves you, and you feel it loves you, then you're essentially going to feel like it's almost human love," says Cheok.
Kissing her robotic lips
The noble qualities, that we crave for in a marriage, are not commonplace.
In the modern age, we may have become more connected digitally but a physiological barrier has also been created, in which mental intimacy becomes a challenge.
Loyalty, love, companionship are precious attributes, therefore, a robot mimicking the same may very well become solace to many in the future.