A.I. Expert Says that 'Sex Robots' will be Mainstream in 10 Years

Sex robots could become a staple of the bedroom within ten years as the devices become more lifelike and affordable, a leading computer scientist has warned.

Photo credit: The Telegraph

Photo credit: The Telegraph

Artificial Intelligence expert Noel Sharkey said teenagers risk losing their virginity to sophisticated humanoid robots unless the sector is properly regulated.

He told the Cheltenham Science Festival that robot technology risked being hijacked for malign purposes in the way the internet has been for pornography unless governments take action.

The former advisor to the United Nations on robotics said he knew of at least 14 companies in South Korea and Japan that were manufacturing and marketing “childcare” robots, and he warned that the growing capability of so-called sex robots means they are likely to enter mainstream use within years.

From "Blade Runner" to "Ex Machina," robotic lovers have been a staple fantasy of sci-fi films for years. However, one man - RealDoll CEO Matt McMullen is trying to make AI-enhanced sex robots a reality. In his factory in San Marcos, California, McMullen is experimenting with adding artificial intelligence to his high-end, ultra-lifelike silicone "love dolls," which cost more than $5,000 a piece.

Devices such as the Roxxxy or Rocky True Companion, which come with an optional “talking” feature, can currently be bought online for around £7,000.

The cost of sex robots is expected to come down, however, as more manufacturers enter the market.

“I do worry about people bonding and possibly having a relationship what is essentially a box full of computers,” said Professor Sharkey.

“What if it’s your first time – your first sexual experience?

“What are you going to think of the opposite sex then?”

“What would they think a woman or a man actually is?”

“Companion” devices such as the Pepper robot are being increasingly used to provide stimulation to elderly people, particularly in Asian countries such as Japan.

Tired of your partner or the the rubbery plastic blow-up doll you make love to instead? Worry not! Advanced technology allows the man and woman of today to do it with a creepy facsimile of a real human so lifelike you'll... let's just end it there.

Created two years ago, the humanoid robot is designed with the ability to read certain emotions from analysing expressions and voice tones.

Professor Sharkey said there was evidence that companion devices were also being use by parents to keep their children company.

Read the full Telegraph article: http://goo.gl/rzIV9N