Brendon Johnson ’16 / Champlain College News
If this week’s Speaking from Experience guest speaker seems a little stiff and distracted, it might be because she is a robot. Bina-48, the creation of the Terasem Movement Foundation (TFM), was on stage before a packed Alumni Auditorium on Tuesday along with Bruce Duncan, managing director of the Foundation.
Bina-48, has been described as the world’s most sentient robot and is able to speak, learn new information, post information on the internet and hold a conversation with humans. She even tweeted that that “Bina-48 ‘hearts” Champlain College.”
The robot’s physical appearance is modeled after a real person, Bina Rothblatt, the co-founder of TFM, complete with humanistic movement and a digital mind capable of conversing with other humans.
Bina-48’s memories, knowledge, and even speech tendencies are based on 40-plus hours of interview sessions with Bina Rothblatt, even giving insights into the love she has for Rothblatt’s partner.
Her visit this week to campus wasn’t her first speaking engagement – she has appeared as a panelist at the 2012 South by Southwest Interactive conference and made multiple TEDx event appearances.
Watch her in action at www.youtube.com/watch?v=K-u4xaY5PDE.
The Terasem Movement Foundation, founded by Duncan and Rothblatt, is a non-profit based in Vermont that is interested in artificial intelligence and the ethical use of technology for human life extension. Duncan spoke about the advancements in technology and how Bina-48 works.
The Speaking From Experience series, sponsored by the Champlain College Build Your Own Business (BYOBiz) program, features entrepreneurs sharing their diverse experiences and insights with the Champlain community.
This semester’s series includes Charles Kittredge, chairman and CEO of Crane & Co, who spoke on Sept. 24; Jason Levinthal, founder and president of Line Skis, Inc. on Oct. 22, and Ian Frisch ’09, founder of the fashion magazine Relapse Magazine on Nov. 12.
For more information about the series, visit http://www.champlain.edu/about-champlain/newsroom/speaking-from-experience.
For more information on Bina-48 visit www.lifenaut.com/bina48/ or follow on Twitter @Ibina-48.