Losing a loved one is painful. In order to be able to have simple conversations with the deceased even after their death, a startup has developed an artificial intelligence with which this should be possible.
On the HereAfter platform, you can record your own voice, tell stories and answer questions.
After the death of the user, relatives can continue to interact with the deceased using these stories.
< p> For example, you can ask for advice or listen to stories.
A website makes it possible to talk to the deceased.
To do this, a person has to tell a wide variety of stories and answer questions before they die.
- < These are recorded and can be used to continue having simple conversations with them after the person dies.
According to the company's CEO, this makes it easier to lose a loved one not, but it helps to keep her memory.
The journalist James Vlahos tells his father about his life almost every day, be it about events from everyday work, secret love affairs or everyday things like his current favorite song. The father often gives him advice or tells stories from his own life. That wouldn't be surprising – if it weren't for the fact that Vlahos's father died of lung cancer in 2017.
In fact, Vlahos is talking to a technology he created himself called Dadbot. He programmed this shortly after his father was diagnosed with cancer in 2016. For months, Vlahos then took in his father while he was telling stories or answering questions. Then Vlahos transformed his father's voice into an interactive artificial intelligence that sounds like his deceased father and that he can still talk to after his father's death.
“The technology has given me and my family great comfort,” Vlahos told Cnet.com. “Of course, it hasn't replaced my father, but it gives me the opportunity to remember him in a whole new way.”
Now Vlahos would like to make this technology available to other people. For this he set up the HereAfter AI portal. There people can record their own voices and keep them for posterity. On the portal, users are asked questions that are intended to encourage them to tell stories, indulge in memories, tell jokes or even sing songs. With the help of these recordings, family members or friends can continue to talk to them, listen to their stories or ask for advice even after the death of the users.
Confusion or anger
“Of course the technology is still in its infancy,” admits Vlahos. She cannot yet imitate really profound and realistic conversations. But he always wants to improve and expand artificial intelligence. “But it is already a simplified version of a conversation and not just a one-way communication.”
Amanda Lambros, a specialist in grief management, sees the benefits of such technology. “This can be extremely helpful for people who are grieving for loved ones,” she told Cnet.com. However, there is also the risk that you will learn something about family members or friends in this way that you did not know before their death, which could lead to confusion or even anger. And of course the deceased would then no longer be able to provide clarification.
“The main purpose of the technology is to preserve memories,” explains Vlahos. «Of course it doesn't make the death of loved ones easier, but it helps to bring the memory of them back to life in a completely new way.»
Do you mourn or < strong> is mourning someone you know?
You can find help here:
Offered hand, worry hotline, Tel. 143
Seelsorge.net, offer of the Reformed and Catholic Churches
Muslim pastoral care, Tel. 043 205 21 29
Lifewith.ch, for affected siblings
Rainbow Switzerland Association, help for grieving families
Pro Juventute, advice for children and young people, Tel. 147
Pro Senectute, advising older people in difficult life situations
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