Talking robot fools people into thinking it’s human

The Science Museum Unveils Their Latest Exhibition "Robotville" Displaying The Most Cutting Edge In European Design
Judges with London’s Royal Society believed the computer program they were talking to was human, making it the first to pass the Turing Test.
Credit: Getty Images

Remember having conversations with AOL Instant Messenger’s pretentious talking bot, SmarterChild? Well, it just got owned by a computer that successfully convinced people it was actually a person last Saturday in London.

The chatterbot fooled 33 percent of a judging panel that it was actually 13-year-old Ukrainian boy named Eugene Goostman after a five-minute conversation during an artificial intelligence competition held by the Royal Society, recognized for scientific advancement.

The bot was deemed successful after it passed the Turing test, in which a computer must convince at least 30 percent of a group of humans that it’s also human after a five-minute chat. The test was created in 1950 by English computer scientist Alan Turing. By his standard, the computer has achieved some level of true artificial intelligence.

Rather than a breakthrough, the news is more of an improvement. The computer was created in 2001 and its earlier version achieved 29 percent in 2012. Nonetheless, the new version has now reached a landmark in the field of artificial intelligence.

Project director John Denning says that his team didn’t expect to break the 30-percent barrier, according to a report from NBC News. “We came close before but we didn’t really expect it to happen,” he says.

The bot could help battle cyber crime in the future, Kevin Warwick, a visiting professor at the University of Reading, tells NBC News. It was created by software engineers Eugene Demchenko and Vladimir Veselov in St. Petersburg, Russia. Out of five computers in the competition, it was the one who most efficiently imitated a human.

The competition took place on the 60th anniversary of Turing’s death. Turing helped decipher Germany’s Enigma code during World War II. He committed suicide in 1954 after his homosexuality was considered a crime, but was granted a posthumous royal pardon six months ago.


Libya seeks ceasefire as south Tripoli a militia…

By Patrick Markey and Aziz El YaakoubiTRIPOLI (Reuters) - Black plumes of smoke marked shell blasts and bulldozed earthen barricades mapped out the frontlines around…

Breaking: News

Russia mad about sanctions, says U.S. contributing to…

Russia reacted angrily on Saturday to additional sanctions imposed by the European Union over Moscow's role in the Ukraine crisis, saying they would hamper cooperation…


Mutant worms stay sober, even on alcohol

U.S. researchers have developed "mutant worms" that do not get drunk by alcohol, a breakthrough that could lead to new treatment for people trying to quit drinking


K-9 nose helps capture $150K in cocaine at…

A furry, four-legged security agent helped authorities stop an illegal cocaine shipment from sneaking past JFK customs.


Review: Brett Ratner's big 'Hercules' movie is small…

The latest "Hercules," starring Dwayne Johnson as the half-god beefcake of Greek myth, strips its hero and tale of most of its fantastical elements.


Scientists recreate world's smallest Monet copy

Scientists have reproduced a famous Impressionist painting using nano-printing, to create what has been described as the world's smallest work of art. Reworked at the…


Jerry Seinfeld is ambidextrous, and other Reddit AMA…

See some of the weirder highlights of Jerry Seinfeld's recent Reddit AMA.

Going Out

Grab a pedestrian and start dancing at What…

As a New Yorker, I’ve mastered the art of focusing my gaze straight ahead. Though it occasionally piques my interest, the absurdities that play out…

U.S. Soccer

Orlando City takes shot at NYCFC over Frank…

Orlando City reminded the world how big a signing Brazilian star Kaka earlier this month with a photo of Kaka mobbed by fans juxtaposed against Lampard.


Jeremy Lin says 'Linsanity' is over as he…

Jeremy Lin lit up the NBA two years ago with his play for the Knicks but he has no desire to recreate "Linsanity" in his new career with the Lakers.


2014 NFL Fantasy Football Top 100 overall player…

2014 NFL Fantasy Football Top 100 overall player rankings

U.S. Soccer

NYCFC announce signing of Frank Lampard

The tease of a big signing Thursday by new MLS side NYCFC ended up being one rumored for weeks. England midfielder Frank Lampard agreed to…


Forget Wi-Fi: Li-Fi could be the future

Li-Fi technology – developed by Mexican company Sisoft – is wireless internet connectivity using specialized LED light.


Weather app Climendo might be the most accurate…

The wait for a truly accurate weather forecast could finally be over thanks to a nifty new app called Climendo.


Napkin Table puts focus off the phone and…

Michael Jan, a design student at Tunghai University in Taiwan, has invented a serviette-picnic blanket hybrid called the Napkin Table.


Essie's new Color Boutique

Essie launches high-tech kiosks at major airports and malls across the country.