Artificial and Sentient

Sentient artificial intelligence has been an ongoing preoccupation in science fiction movies, TV shows, books and other media. It’s not limited to science fiction, it’s slowly making its way into popular culture as seen with Marvel’s Avengers 2: Age of Ultron, a film focused on a sentient artificial intelligence (Ultron, voiced by James Spader) becoming cognisant of the needlessness of the human race. The same can be seen with I, Robot and Ex Machina, and is explored in Humans and Almost Human.

George Dvorsky has listed a number of myths about artificial intelligence in the wake of AlphaGo winning two out of three games in the Go tournament against grandmaster Lee Sedol. So it seems like AI is becoming a closer and closer reality but continues to be depicted as something that will replace humanity rather than work with us.

For my project, I’d like to play with this idea and test how people feel about AI walking among us by developing a simple game of deception. The concept of the Turing Test, a test designed to determine if AI is indistinguishable from humanity, underlies this idea.

Things to research from here:

  • Origins of artificial intelligence (definition would be good)
    • R.U.R (Rossum)
  • Golem, automaton, ?
  • Gendered Robots
    • Metropolis
  • Why are people pursuing this?
  • At what point does a human become a robot from cybernetics?
  • With sentience would artificial intelligence be a replacement/challenger or an aid?
  • Ethics
  • Charles Babbage – calculating engine – hand-cranked computational
  • Genie?

Other related texts:

  • Skinners trilogy – brain scans are taken from a terminal car crash victim and imprinted on a cyborg
  • Mr Robot
  • Chappie
  • Her
  • Bicentennial Man
  • Ghost in the Shell
  • Terminator franchise

14 thoughts on “Artificial and Sentient”

    1. It seems robots are more acceptable if they “feel” and are emotional. The. They are more human.
      Also where does the replacement of our body parts including hearts and limbs with super bionic parts sit in this approach? When people become part machine to survive.
      Thank you for prompting me to think ..


  1. Could you elaborate on “developing a simple game of deception”? What do you want it to look like?
    The key interest I get from this is the depiction of whether AI will serve us or rule us in popular culture. The development of AI also reflects our fear of corrupting the current power structure in our climate. Certainly looking at the historic roots of these two theories will be important. To add to your research list, you should consider how different research fields and industries will approach the development and potential of AI differently. A TED Radio Hour episode from 2013 collated interviews with people from different industries approaching the development of robots and AI:


    1. Hey Paul, thanks for your comment.
      So my DA is going to suit both Cybercultres and Digital Game Cultures. At the moment I am investigating the game mechanics of The Resistance and Coup. Coup is a very basic concept and so far my ideas are modifications of this, although I’m happy to develop beyond that.
      Thank you for the source, I will add it to my reading list. In the seminar yesterday, we established AI theory was going to have to be a big area of research for this so my next blog will be zeroing in on different areas of research and theory and how I can possibly incorporate this into the game mechanics I like.
      Sorry for the long reply.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Sort of both? I’m thinking different types of Al characters that the players can roleplay as. This is where the research is required. The whole project is both complex and simple at the same time.


  2. I love your concept, I am also exploring the idea of sentient artificial intelligence. Have you heard of the book “Robopocalypse” by Daniel H. Wilson? The author is has a Ph.D. in Robotics and based his novel on real-life research. The book essentially shows robots becoming sentient and they believe that humans and robots cannot live simultaneously on Earth. Acting strategic, the robots in the book do not want to wipe out humanity immediately because they first want to analyse biological factors of Earth.

    Robots are programmed so they cannot act unpredictable, unlike humans, who are very unpredictable. But, how are we to know that robots can’t become unpredictable when they become sentient?

    There’s the idea that humans will trust sentient robots more when they appear more human-like. Did you know that the first sentient robots are deemed to be like CP30 from Star Wars than the Terminator?

    Here are a few links that could be helpful for your research that I am using too:
    David Hanson: close to developing the first sentient robot
    Pepper the sentient robot
    Scroll down to: Should we been scared of A.I.?

    You can check out my previous blog post “Robot vs. Man” to read further into my thoughts of the novel and ideas.


  3. Wow, its like a treasure trove in here. Very interesting post and i think this is where everyone is coming. Nicely presented and outlined. Im particularly interested in 2 points because it also ties into how im going to present my work.
    – Gendered Robots
    – With sentience would artificial intelligence be a replacement/challenger or an aid?
    Correct me if im wrong but what ive gathered is an intelligent android in my case for my work , would it pose a threat to us or would it aid us am i right?
    I dont think we would ever be able to answer that. We cant even predict each other to a certain extent how the hell are we to predict a robot.
    I think Fallout 4 , presents this idea very nicely. It incorporates different androids, with different personalites and they all have their own storyline , different consequences for actions and the way that theyve presented it makes it feel real. I think its a great example to go off because theres more of an in depth storyline to it . You have choices to make in the game and these Androids react to your reaction in ways you wouldnt expect them to . Were basically creating another race so essentially theyll be thinking differently to each other like we all do .

    10:00 -13:10
    15:25 – 17:12
    These are the times that may really interest you , just to get another perspective . This guy who is playing isnt the best example , i feel as if hes rushed it and doesnt get the Synth to talk . I would upload my version of events but im too far in and cant go back to that level . Essentially if he kept the Synth named ‘Gabriel’ talking hell say That he grew up , had his own mother and father, played baseball as a kid and that he wasnt a synth, he has different ideals and when confronted with the idea that he is a robot is outraged, he doesnt believe it and cries out “how can i be a robot when i have all these ideals, i think for myself, i eat, i sleep, i even cut myself shaving’ so to a point i believe that there are positives and negatives. So ye this is an example of how a robot can be a challenger i guess.


  4. I think you make a really strong point in addressing that predominant notion of sentient A.I.’s as something that will replace humanity rather than exist in unison. It all comes back to humans fearing what we create, we are the architects of our own destruction and whatnot. It’s what I plan to touch on with my research, from where this fear originated, and where it will lead us. We always seem to default to the negatives, and image the worst future where AI’s replace humans. I do believe in some sort of symbiotic result between humans and technology will be our future, one cannot exist without the other. If you hadn’t done so already, I think your research could benefit from touching Microsoft’s latest AI and how it backfired from trolls. It’s result sort of juxtaposes my belief, that our faults will lead to their faults.


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