Google’s research-and-development arm X’s former chief business officer Mo Gawdat asserted that virtual reality and augmented reality will very soon make it possible to have sexual experiences indistinguishable from real life. As guest on the Impact Theory podcast, Gawdat said that virtual reality and augmented reality headsets, like Apple’s Vision Pro or Quest 3, would soon be used to simulate sex.
Sex happens in the brain, Gawdat said, noting that the physical part is “not difficult to simulate”, as humans have been doing for a long time now with increasingly sophisticated sex toys for men and women.
It’s all signals in your brain. If you really want to take the magic out of it, it can be simulated.Mo Gawdat
With the emergence of technologies like Elon Musk’s Neuralink brain implant, enabling machines to be connected directly to the nervous system, Gawdat is convinced that the need for human partners could soon be eliminated. According to him, these devices will make it possible to experience true sexual pleasure with robots or even AI. He claims that even the emotional and mental aspects of a relationship can be recreated via signals in the brain.
Once the individual believes an illusion is real, it doesn’t matter whether an AI robot is conscious or not. “You know, that’s actually quite messy,” he said. “It’s all signals in your brain that you enjoy companionship and sexuality, and — if you really want to take the magic out of it — it can be simulated.”
“Does it really matter if the Morgan Freeman talking to you on the screen is actually Morgan Freeman or an AI generated avatar, if you’re convinced that it is Morgan Freeman?” he said. “We get lost in those conversations: are they alive are they sentient. If my brain believes they are, they are.”
In 2019, Shenzhen Atall Intelligent Robot Technology developed a sex robot with advanced stimulation capabilities, body temperature set at 37 degrees to resemble a real woman’s temperature, safety measures to prevent electric shock or fire risk and a high-tech system with internet connection. The Chinese company revealed that there was an increasing demand for this type of “toys” because the lifestyle of those who buy it is fast-paced and they do not have time to develop a relationship with a woman. At the time, the cost of the sex robot was roughly 2,700 euros.
The conversation also evoked the flood of AI-generated DeepFakes images and videos flooding the web, now so difficult to detect that many Internet users are falling for them every day. In May of this year, influencer Caryn Marjorie created a ChatGPT-based chatbot in her image called CarynAI. Since then, several hundreds of people have paid for a date with the chatbot.
Many communities are trying to create uncensored AI chatbots to indulge in hours-long erotic discussions. New open-source AI models allow free customization of a chatbot’s personality, and some are using it to clone the woman of their dreams. Philosopher Yuval Noah Harari fears that AI could end up creating its own religion to indoctrinate humans.
A team of doctors released a report in 2018 revealing that sex robots won’t solve feelings of loneliness, as reported by Interesting Engineering. The robots won’t reduce either the incidence of violent sex crimes against female sexual partners. It may in fact make matters worse. The NHS doctors went on to say there was no evidence supporting the belief that robots would reduce loneliness and violence toward women.