Neon, the lifelike AI from Samsung, answers my questions and takes me to the uncanny valley
Neon, the lifelike AI from Samsung, answers my questions and takes me to the uncanny valley
6:22

Neon, the lifelike AI from Samsung, answers my questions and takes me to the uncanny valley

Science
[MUSIC] This is Neon. Not the screen behind me, the person. Only it's not a person, it's an avatar. It's the most hyped thing here at CES. It's from Samsung's Star Labs, and they're meant for human interaction. They're meant to look and behave like humans do. Yeah, you're meant to be able to talk to them. And here today, we're actually gonna get a chance to see them in action. So we're gonna seen NEON demoed and then hopefully we're gonna get a chance to actually interact with these avatars. Here's what we know so far. They're based on a platform called Core R3 which is Reality Realtime Responsiveness. They're meant to create movements and facial expressions in realtime I'm romantic feel like you're talking with a human but supposedly they're not meant to replace a human. They're not meant to be a digital assistant. That just looks really human. So don't think Google Assistant don't think Amazon's Alexa or because the Samsung don't think Bixby instead. They're meant to feel more like an actual human and like have a job like a human like a yoga instructor or a concierge. That's the grand vision, supposedly. This thing is still shrouded in mystery. So hopefully we're gonna get some answers to our questions here to see how close they can come to actually feel like you're talking to a human. Or if it gets stuck in the uncanny valley cuz man, that's close. But when it's actually interacting in real time, is it gonna be able to continue that level of response Summits now Star Labs, which is the innovative branch of Samsung that is making me on is promising a better of this for 2020. We don't know if this is meant for consumers or businesses or whatnot, but it's not meant to replicate humans. It's not meant to replicate digital assistants. It's meant to just provide a sort of natural interaction and then maybe be integrated into businesses in a way that is natural. And we're going to find out how natural they can be right now. [MUSIC]. So, the question is what is neon? [UNKNOWN] create something that is real. Virtually. Can we create virtually but it still feels real? So I've just seen the neon presentationin action. We saw people from the company interacting with it, And it's cool. But then I was getting some uncanny valley vibes, especially when it was responding. It was holding so still. Now part of that process, they still have to integrate that spectra system that's going to make it able to learn human interactions a little bit. I still wonder why they're showing it off Now, when it's still so rigid hurry thinks it's courageous. And it's cool. They're excited about this and they're passionate and they want the world to see it and help them build it. They mentioned that it's going to be an open platform. So that's really nice. I hope they just weren't trying to like that. Meet a deadline, so they rushed it out. Anyway, it's still in the early stages. It's still impressive. So I'm excited. But unexcitable. There's a handful of reasons for skepticism here. We're seeing another demo over here. That's the exact same as demos we've seen before. There's a guy controlling the neon. Runs with a little tablet. And they always respond the exact same way and it's always super robotic. These guys, the ones that actually look super lifelike, this is clearly a pre-rendered animation. So is this actually a thing? Hopefully We find out more. I'm gonna get a chance to interact with it myself right now. So look at the hair. It changes and shifts ever so slightly like she's getting more and less hair from a distance. It looks very very human, but the closer you get, my gosh, it's like A sci fi movie gone wrong,it's like the [UNKNOWN] before this thing comes out of the screen and kills me, and I'm getting the heebie jeebies. Okay, so to get to chat with [UNKNOWN] and ask you a few questions. Here we go. And my questions are going to be relayed by Simon here to [UNKNOWN]. Neon, what's your favorite food? Neon, what's your favorite food? [BLANK_AUDIO] Pizza. [LAUGH] Neon, what do you want? What do you hope to accomplish? Neon, what do you want? What do you hope to accomplish? [BLANK_AUDIO] That's not really something I care about. Neon, do you like football? Neon, do you like football? No, definitely not. [LAUGH] No why not neon? Why not neon? [BLANK_AUDIO] My neurons are burning just thinking. [INAUDIBLE] [LAUGH] Okay, and so we got to see it in action and react to a few of my questions in real time. Thank you very much, Simon. So that was cool and maybe even a little bit more successful than the demo we saw on stage. It was reacting in somewhat real time to me well The Simon interpreting for me, it wasn't really building on context with questions. That's what I was going for with the second football question and Google assistant and Amazon's assistant can do that. And it wasn't doing that. Really. It was just getting a canned response. Still, it was interacting to what it was asked. And there's reason for excitement here. I want to paint with a careful brush. Skepticism is absolutely warranted, but an early demo and maybe they're excited. It's cool. Is this thing ever gonna see the light of day? Is it gonna live up to its promise? I don't know. But for the time being It's neat and it looks really human under the right circumstances and hopefully those circumstances continue to grow and expand. [MUSIC]

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