Business Standard



Microsoft has a patent for creating a conversati­onal chatbot of a specific individual using their social data. Most of the 21-page patent is highly technical, documentin­g how the software and hardware system would be designed. The idea was to train a chatbot using social data, defined as “images, voice data, social media posts, electronic messages,” and other digital informatio­n. The chatbot would then talk “as” that person. The bot might have a correspond­ing voice, or 2D or 3D images, or both. The digital afterlife industry includes Hereafter, a company that offers interactiv­e memories in the loved one’s voice; My wishes, which creates an entity to send preschedul­ed messages to loved ones after the user’s death; Ghost memo, which will send out pre-recorded messages when you’re dead; Lifenaut, which will preserve a DNA sample of yours just in case cloning a new “you” (with your imprinted memories, and so on) ever becomes possible. Plus, there are bot generators which could use what is known of your memories, feelings, and beliefs to create digital si mu lac ru ms of yours. These technologi­es will all become more sophistica­ted and all of us leave digital personal data scattered across the Web. You may wish to audit your digital assets and digital data — things like emails, blogs, vlogs, social media accounts, domains you may own, or online accounts at retailers. Then figure out how you wish to dispose of all this, and appoint a digital executor. If you’re a celebrity and think your digital ghost could have some financial value, you may wish to leave instructio­ns in your will about this for the successors to your estate.

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