Create a Virtual Person
For as long as the concept of a computer has been around, people have asked whether you can make a true virtual person with one. A computer that can feel, react, adapt, and grow as an individual, either controlled by you or to compete with or work together with a person. Currently, our science is far from a true human-intelligence computer, but significant steps have been made in creating virtual people.
In fact, it has now become a commercial empire, with various programs going around that allow you to create virtual individuals for you to care for or "speak" with or guide, in various guises. Here are some of the more popular commercial enterprises on the Internet involving the creation of virtual people, as well as official scientific research on the subject.
Commercial Enterprises based on a "Virtual Person"
Here are a list of entities that provide virtual person creation. Please visit their websites if you'd like more information on any of them.
Pokemon - Perhaps one of the most famous to do so. Through video games, movies, tv series, stuffed animals, and more, pokemon attempted to provide children with a virtual individual that would react to what they did.
Tamagotchi - One of the original virtual people, it basically amounted to a virtual pet you could take care of. It would attempt to respond like a normal pet would, but in the end it's interface was pretty simplistic. Nevertheless, it was a huge hit among children
Don't sit around looking at this!! Try some of the ones listed above. Certainly you'll find something that you like eventually.
Second Life/Other MMO's - With Second Life being a prime example, creating a virtual person doesn't necessarily mean creating a super-advanced AI. Second Life creates a virtual individual that a human controls, but is totally in a virtual universe. It's a moderate hit in the mainstream, but has a huge cult following (similar to Star Trek or the store IKEA).
Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion - THis Elder Scrolls game takes the AI to a whole new level. It runs on a 24/7 clock, does basic tasks during the day, can act variably to emergency situations, and can obtain a shifting personality based on events that take place before them. Certainly far short of actual human intelligence, but a far leap from the extremely simple enemies of the past.
The Sims - Ah yes, who could ignore the smash hit that is The Sims and The Sims 2? Create your own virtual people, and literally run every aspect of their lives. This is one avenue that creating a virtual person can take you.
So that's that. These are all the ways I've found to create a virtual person. If you know of any others, by all means please post them to the comments section and I'll add them later. Thanks for listening!!
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- The Free IT Guy
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