As I grew frustrated with wrestling with Foursquare’s bizarre password reset system that either kept asking me for the password that I couldn’t remember or asking me to log in first, I got to pondering:
Machines that provide services not being able to feel anything will probably someday be considered a bug, not a feature.
I also wonder how much human rage is generated from struggling with unfeeling machines.[^MachineEmotions]
I was especially thinking of that scene from “Office Space” with the printer.
If Antonio Damasio is to be believed, it will be impossible to build true artificial intelligence without building artificial emotionality.
At least in biological organisms, emotions are the system library that intelligence depends on.[^AntonioDamasio]
And while unfeeling people may be even worse than unfeeling machines, I think the expectation is different. I think even cynics and misanthropes expect to be able to elicit some sort of emotional reaction from a human, no matter how heartless they might be (although I don’t think truly heartless people can last very long in customer service positions—I don’t think they’re very good for PR) but I think everyone knows a machine doesn’t care at all.