Sex robots could soon feel sensations ‘just like humans’ after creepy ‘printed skin’ developed giving a sense of touch
Sex robots could start to experience human-like sensations after scientists developed a new piece of artificial intelligence technology.
The technology is part of a robotic platform that connects to sensors attached to human skin.
Scientists are hoping humans will be given more control over robots while also being protected from hazards.
Researchers believe it will allow robots to sense temperature and whether chemicals are toxic, according to the California Institute of Technology.
Wei Gao, an assistant professor of medical engineering at Caltech, asked: “Can we also make them sense chemical like explosives and nerve agents or biohazards like infectious bacteria and viruses?”
The skin is made from a hydrogel that’s designed to make the fingertips of robots more like humans.
Scientists say that there will be sensors inside the hydrogel which makes it easier for robots to detect what’s around them.
Researchers added: “These sensors are literally printed onto the skin in the same way that an inkjet printer applies text to a sheet of paper.”
Gao thinks developers have demonstrated a “proof of concept” but he wants to continue developing the skin.
He wants to improve its durability so it can last longer, as well as its stability.
Gao said: “We want to put it on more powerful robots and make them smarter, more intelligent.”
Scientists are optimistic that they can optimize the inks and improve what robots will be able to detect.
It comes as studies show that humans are starting to form all kinds of relationships with machines.
Nearly 84 percent of people in the world own a smartphone, a survey reveals, and the devices are becoming something we can’t live without.
David Levy, a doctor of social robotics, thinks AI robots will fully integrate into human’s social and sex lives in decades to come.
He said: “I think the first sophisticated sex robots will be around by 2050, but it will be another 50 years before they’re commonplace and people accept its normal for a friend to say, ‘I am in love with a robot and I am thinking of marrying it.’”
Ethics expert Neil MacArthur wrote in Men’s Health that he believes sex robots will help “intimacy and sex inequality.”
‘ROBOTS HELP SEX INEQUALITY’
He thinks sex robots would help people who don’t have access to sexual partners because of a variety of factors such as age, health, or “level of conventional attractiveness.”
But, critics claim the accessibility would breed social isolation as robots would be an easier option than humans.
Humans don’t always choose the easiest option, MacArthur said.
He said: “We default to variety, and this is also how we advance our lives and our careers – by choosing hard over easy by ourselves.”
And, a survey which was conducted by Sexual Alpha revealed that two in five people said they were open to the idea of having sex with a bot.
More people apparently prefer to be intimate with a sex bot (37.5 percent) instead of having casual sex with a human lover (30.1 percent).
The survey had a sample size of 3,292 people – which organizers admitted was small.
“You have a digital version of yourself, a partial version of yourself online in the form of your emails, your social media, and all the things that you do.”
Ameca is one of the most lifelike robots to date that can smile, blink and move its shoulders in a highly realistic way.
Engineered Arts, Ameca’s so-called “parents,” said it “is the world’s most advanced human-shaped robot representing the forefront of human-robotics technology.”
This story originally appeared on The Sun and has been reproduced here with permission.