Scientists say although AI will improve many aspects of everyday life – there will always be some things androids can’t handle
ROBOTS could turn deadly if we try to programme them with the human race’s sense of humour, experts warn.
Scientists say although AI will improve many aspects of everyday life – there will always be some things androids shouldn’t be allowed to mess with.
Trying to make robots understand our jokes could go very wrong, say scientists
“Artificial intelligence will never get jokes like humans do,” said Kiki Hempelmann, a computational linguist who studies humour at Texas A&M University-Commerce.
“In themselves, they have no need for humour. They miss completely context.”
And trying to make robots understand our jokes could go very, very wrong, she adds.
“Teaching AI systems humour is dangerous because they may find it where it isn’t and they may use it where it’s inappropriate,” Hempelmann said.
“Maybe bad AI will start killing people because it thinks it is funny.”
It’s not surprising robots struggle to determine what is funny or not, explained Tristan Miller, a computer scientist at Darmstadt University of Technology in Germany.
“Creative language – and humour in particular – is one of the hardest areas for computational intelligence to grasp,” said Miller, who has analysed more than 10,000 puns and called it torture.
“It’s because it relies so much on real-world knowledge – background knowledge and commonsense knowledge.
“A computer doesn’t have these real-world experiences to draw on. It only knows what you tell it and what it draws from.”
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Some computers can generate and understand puns without help from humans because puns are based on different meanings of similar-sounding words.
But they fall down after that, said Purdue University computer scientist Julia Rayz.
“They get them – sort of,” Rayz said. “Even if we look at puns, most of the puns require huge amounts of background.”
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