Soul Machines’ AI Florence Helps Smokers Quit

With smokers at great risk of Covid-19 complications, Auckland-based Soul Machines, leaders in artificial general intelligence (AGI), and the World Health Organization (WHO) have developed Florence, an embodied AI who offers online counselling for those hoping to quit. S.C. Stuart takes “Florence’s artificial smarts for a spin” and reports on the results for PC Magazine, with the story also published by Medium.

Stuart also spoke with co-founder and chief brand officer of Soul Machines, Greg Cross about how the partnership came about.

“When the Covid-19 pandemic hit, Soul Machines worked quickly to create COVID Sam, a first line responder for the pandemic, followed by Bella, a Digital Kiwi guide and friend, born during quarantine who can share information on a range of topics including mental health and wellbeing. WHO saw a demo that Soul Machines worked on for another public health agency,” Cross explains.

Florence is based on a real person, Stuart reports. Soul Machines did motion-capture sessions with Shushila Takao, a New Zealand-born actor of Māori, Indian, and French descent, known for her role on the TV series Tatau.

Original article by S.C. Stuart, PC Magazine, Medium, November 6, 2020.


Tags: COVID-19  Greg Cross  Medium  PC Magazine  Soul Machines  World Health Organization (WHO)  

Invert Robotics Relocates HQ to Dublin

Invert Robotics Relocates HQ to Dublin

Christchurch-founded Invert Robotics, a company that develops inspection robots, is relocating its headquarters to Dublin after recently raising €3.5 million from backers that include State-backed Finistere Ventures, Charlie Taylor reports for…