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Robot Adam Z1 needs funds to pay his AI researcher and roboticist friends to build him a better mind!
Ben Goertzel
Dallas, Texas
United States
2 Team Members

Help Us Make Adam Z1 the World's Smartest Robot
-- and Launch a Revolution in AI

We are a team of seasoned AI and robotics experts, and we're asking for your kind participation in our quest to give our robot Adam Z1 the mental ability of a three year old child.

Who needs a robot with the brain of a three year old child, you ask?  Aren’t there enough bratty 3 year olds in the world?

The point is -- a three year old has one critical thing that all current AI programs lack: COMMON SENSE.

By using the OpenCog Artificial General Intelligence (AGI) architecture to create a childlike mind for our Hanson Robokind robot Adam Z1, we will be doing more than just making Adam the world's smartest robot.  We will be creating the first AI system with real common sense understanding.

Currently the intelligence of robots is limited by their reliance on “narrow AI systems” – AI programs that are good at doing one particular task but lack the ability for generalized intelligence, because theyare  unable to comprehend and interpret the world around them.   

Once the common sense bottleneck is passed, all sorts of amazing practical AI applications will become possible – the world will be transformed.  

Creating a robot toddler is an amazing project unto itself, but even more amazing in terms of what it will lead to – a core AGI engine that understands the everyday human world, and can power an unlimited variety of intelligent robots and computer systems.

Today, in 2013, we have powerful computers, deep knowledge of cognitive and neural science, and fantastic robots like Adam Z1.  We have the knowledge it takes to make a critical breakthrough in AGI robotics.  We are at the point where we can make the long-time dreams of the AI field come to life.

All we need is just a little bit of research funding, to help us make it happen.

And that’s where you come in.

If you want to be part of research that will change the world in countless astounding ways, this is your chance!

Geni Lab

Here at Geni Lab we’ve assembled some of the world’s top experts to break through the barrier and give Adam what we refer to as “robotic common sense”, meaning the ability to adapt, interpret, and apply knowledge to make more intelligent decisions.   By integrating the OpenCog AGI architecture with the Adam Z1 robot and teaching the robot in our lab, we believe that we can make Adam roughly as intelligent as a three year old toddler!

Furthermore, all the research we do on Adam Z1 will be open source and available to the public. This means that we – and others – will be able to apply this new technology to address many of the world’s vital problems.  

Check out our Geni Lab website for more information, including a 7 minute video overview surveying the work of Geni Lab’s key researchers.

The Intelligence of Robot Adam Z1

If we are able to fund this project, Adam Z1 will far surpass the intelligence of current robots and will acquire what we equate to “toddler level intelligence”.  This means that Adam will be able to accomplish the following tasks and many more:

  • Play with Toys: Adam will build using blocks and play with other children’s toys
  • Draw Pictures: Adam will interact with an IPad and use it to draw pictures that represent anything from his thoughts to how he interprets his environment
  • Communicate with Humans: Using his OpenCog powered brain, Adam will speak with us and tell us what he is thinking, what he wants, and respond to your questions. Technically, this is referred to as “experientially grounded language understanding and generation.”
  • Respond to Human Emotion: With David Hanson’s help, Adam will display human emotions at a level that far surpasses current robots. Taking it a step further, Adam will even be able interpret your emotions and respond accordingly. If Adam thinks you’re sad for example, he can cheer you up with a happy remark or funny joke!
  • Schedule and Make Plans: Adam will make reasonable and rational decisions and plan a schedule accordingly. If you want to have a discussion with him about a specific topic later that day, Adam can remind you!

The Impact of Robotic Intelligence 

Science fiction tends to focus on the possible downsides of advanced AI, because crises and battles make exciting stories.   In reality, though, AI like the kind we’re building for Adam Z1 has the potential to enhance the lives of billions of people. Here are just some of the vital problems and impacts that intelligent AI can have on our society:

  • Short term (3-5 years): An AI with common sense understanding and basic general purpose thinking ability, once created, can be expected to rapidly pervade cutting-edge areas in the software and hardware industry, including scientific data analysis, adaptive control of industrial and consumer robots, video game AI, internet search, automated question answering
  • Mid Term (5-20 years): Once the common sense bottleneck has been passed, AGI can be expected to transform essentially every industry on the planet, step by step.   Two areas that interest us especially are service robots (robots to clean the house, robot assistants to follow you everywhere and help you with the tedia of everyday life, robot tutors to help the kids, etc.), and AGI scientists (imagine a biology lab where experimental design, data analysis and lab equipment operation is all done by an integrated AGI system, networked with thousands of similar systems around the world – how much progress would be made at curing disease and prolonging life that way?)
  • Long Term (20+ years): We are fans and friends of Ray Kurzweil and Vernor Vinge.   A toddler-like mind for Adam Z1 will be a big step beyond the current state of robotics – but the REALLY big step will be when the global network of robots, AGI programs and human beings moves on to a radically superhuman sort of general intelligence.   This may sound fanciful, but no more so than the Internet would have sounded in 1925.  But to get to the awesome Singularity scenarios that Kurzweil and Vinge talk about, we need to take first steps first.  The next step on the path involves the achievement of basic, everyday robotic common sense … such as we plan to inculcate in Adam Z1 over the next couple years.  

The World Renowned Team

Hailing from across the world, the Geni Lab leadership team consists of the following experts capable of making this dream a reality:

Ben Goertzel - Building the Brain. World renowned leader in Artificial General Intelligence. Leader of the OpenCog Artificial Intelligence Project and the AGI conference series, author of numerous books and research papers on AGI, founder of multiple commercial AI projects.

David Hanson – Creator of the Adam Z1 robot.  David’s company Hanson Robokind builds the Zeno line of humanoid robots, of which Adam Z1 is an early example. 

Mark Tilden – Expert on Robot movement. The inventor of BEAM robotics and creator of the WowWee RoboSapien Humanoid Robots.   He is the man to make Adam move with naturalness and broad capability.

Gino Yu – Consciousness and Human-Machine Interaction Expert.  Gino is the Principal Investigator of the current OpenCog project at Hong Kong Poly U, where he serves as a professor.   An expert in human-computer interaction, he will mastermind the social and emotional aspects of Adam Z1’s software.

Together,this "Dream Team"'s vast experience and deep seeded motivation to enhance humanity through robotics and artificial intelligence makes us the perfect team to expand the boundaries of intelligent AI.

The Timeline

With your funds, we plan to hire some of the world’s top developers and build Adam’s new mind according to the following rough timetable:

  • 4 months- Basic Functionality: Adam will be playing with blocks and other toys and following  simple English instructions
  • 8 months- Interpretive Functionality: He’ll be using English to describe what I'm doing and responding to the emotions I see on peoples' faces with my own emotions
  • 12 months- Complex Functionality: He’ll be capable of understanding and speaking more complex sentences and carrying out longer sequences of actions. I’ll be able to express myself and my thoughts through art.
  • 18 months: Full Functionality: He’ll be playing more creatively and flexibly, and initiating all sorts of conversations and actions at an intelligence level comparable to that of a three year old toddler.

Changing the World

Adam Z1, awesome as he is going to be once we’ve built his new mind, is only a small representation of the immense potential that AGI possess.   This technology has the potential to impact everyone’s life dramatically and positively, and now is your chance to get involved! Through this project you have the opportunity to help push humanity forward and forever cement your legacy in the future of artificial intelligence!

Find This Campaign On
raised by 138 people in 1 month
2% funded
No time left
$300,000 USD goal
Flexible Funding This campaign has ended and will receive all funds raised.
Campaign Closed
This campaign ended on July 31, 2013
Select a Perk
  • $3USD
    Good Digital Karma

    Adam Z1 and his brilliant researcher friends are thankful for all help anyone chooses to provide them, in their quest to push forward the frontiers of AI, robotics and intelligence on Earth!

    1 claimed
  • $10USD
    Join the Adam Z1 Club

    Involves the opportunity to get exclusive photo + video updates, as well as the ability to participate in live speaking events. (Note: Membership in the Adam Z1 Club is also included in all higher levels of donation.)

    17 claimed
  • $25USD
    Adam Will Know You

    Your name and an interesting fact of your choosing will be uploaded into Adam Z1's working memory. The first robot with real common sense understanding will know who you are!

    12 claimed
  • $50USD
    A Surprise Gift from Adam Z1

    It could be an artwork Adam has created ... it could be a song he has composed in your honor ... or an autographed book by one of Adam's mind architects.... That's for Adam to decide! (Ah, and he'll remember you too...)

    6 claimed
  • $100USD
    Adam Z1 T-Shirt

    Exclusive, limited edition T-shirt of Adam Z1 -- each one signed by the robot itself, or one of his mind architects.

    6 claimed
  • $250USD
    T-shirt PLUS artwork!

    For your donation you will receive one of Adam Z1's limited edition robo-beautiful artworks, along with an exclusive Adam Z1 T-shirt, and the ability to upload your name and a cool fact into Adam's memory.

    0 claimed
  • $500USD
    Google Hangout with Adam Z1

    Once the work of building Adam's new brain is underway, he'll be able to hold simple English conversations all by himself. If you help out with $500 now, Adam will be more than happy to include you in one of his online chats, and share with you some of his amazing robot wisdom. (And you'll get an exclusive T-shirt, yadda yadda as well)

    0 claimed
  • $1,000USD
    Private Video Chat w/ Adam

    Adam's going to be a busy little robot, once he gets the brain he's looking for. But if you donate $1000 to help him get that brain, he'll promise to take 15 minutes out of his insanely busy schedule of playing with blocks and drawing pictures to chat with you via Google Hangouts. What could be better? (plus an exclusive T-shirt, yadda yadda)

    1 claimed
  • $5,000USD
    Behind the Scenes @ GENI-Lab

    What does it look like when a bunch of super-smart AI geeks adapt their software to give a cute little robot boy a mind? There's only one way to find out! If you donate $5000 to help Adam get his brain built, you can be one of the select few to go Behind the Scenes at the GENI-Lab, aka the Adam Z1 Brain Factory… (Plus, all the perks offered for smaller donation levels, yadda yadda…)

    0 claimed
  • $10,000USD
    Dinner w/ the Dream Team

    Want to get to know the minds behind MY mind ? Mark Tilden, Adam's creator David Hanson, Ben Goertzel, Gino Yu....? In gratitude for your generous and visionary donation, they'll be happy to take you out to dinner and give you the inside scoop on their work and their plans for the future. (And plus all the other perks that come with lower donation levels…)

    0 claimed
  • $75,000USD
    Robot Child w/ OpenCog Mind

    We will get you a brand new Hanson Robokind humanoid robot, complete with the same wizzy research software being used in the GENI-Lab to make Adam Z1's brain smarter. The GENI Lab Dream Team scientists will sign your robot for you too, making it a unique collector's item. There's only one Adam Z1, but your own bot will grow its own awesome personality over time.

    0 claimed
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