After Deep Blue (ADB)

After Deep Blue (referencing the first chess computer to beat a world champion) focuses on the emotional connections we develop with computers. In these videos you can see how the snake-like robot seems to cuddle against the user in a convincingly organic way. Voice automation and the A.I. systems generating their words have been able to operate in more socially acceptable ways, catering to our perception of what natural language sounds like. Similarly, the features and nuances that make up tactile affection are seen reproduced in ADB aggregating into behavior that comes alive.

Because the piece is so simple and elegant, there's not much that I think would improve the overall experience. Different modes of activity would be interesting to see, for example the snake could get more or less hyperactive the more it's struggling to be touched or it could become fatigued. I would also like to see multiple snakes all snuggling together in a pile on the floor to see if that would create any interesting feedback-loop behavior.

There's a great blog post written by the creators about the influence the Deep Blue project had on this piece. Deep Blue in part made audiences realize computational advancement in relation to human function and ability. People wondered about what different human behaviors and processes could be replicated by computers to the point of allowing for seamless interaction. With ADB, rather than replicating a function as logical as playing chess, a much more real sensation - intimacy and affection - is exploited to make incredibly animalistic behaviors.