Artificial intelligence is being introduced into the field of funeral services, and if one of Microsoft’s patents is implemented, it will allow the living to chat with the bot of a deceased person. A patent for the creation of a chatbot that recreates the identity of a deceased person was granted by the US Patent and Trademark Office at the end of 2020 to Microsoft. As a result, relatives will be able to “communicate” with the deceased person’s virtual bot.
The idea of creating a virtual image of any person based on the available open data from social networks (photos, likes, information about a person’s hobbies, data on purchases and work) was voiced last spring by a scientist from the Department of Innovation at the University of Arizona, Fahim Hussein. All the data required to create a virtual avatar can be obtained from the Internet even without obtaining the user’s consent.
Microsoft developers took a similar approach, expanding the data range by obtaining information about the person’s email. Artificial intelligence creates the basis for a chatbot based on a comprehensive analysis of a person’s identity. As a result, the bot can conduct a dialogue, imitating the behavior of a real person. For greater realism, it is possible to create a three-dimensional model of a person or place a photo on an avatar.
Thus, Microsoft will allow the introduction of new technologies in the market of funeral services, providing the relatives of the deceased with the opportunity to preserve his memory using holographic images and communication with a chatbot.