4 May 2022
The “Banal” Deception of Digital Presence – Projecting Life onto Media and Machines, from Turing to Siri

Simone Natale

21 May 2024
2023/24 /ɪˈməːʃən/
111
Difficult Heritage: disputed figures in contemporary memorial museums

Giulia Bertolazzi

21 May 2024
2023/24 /ɪˈməːʃən/
111
“Antimonumenta”: artistic practice in feminist Mexico

Francesca Romana Gregori

9 May 2024
2023/24 /ɪˈməːʃən/
111
Death and Virtual Mourning. The “Return of the Dead” in Digital Afterlife

Maria Serafini

7 May 2024
2023/24 /ɪˈməːʃən/
111
Vierundzwanzig Beine! Carts, chariots, carriages and other (image-)media in Warburg’s Mnemosyne

Katia Mazzucco

16 April 2024
2023/24 /ɪˈməːʃən/
111
Education meets Virtual Reality. Reasoning on learning outcomes, inclusion and didactic scenarios

Ilaria Terrenghi

4 April 2024
2023/24 /ɪˈməːʃən/
111
Rape or “rape”? Virtual violence and the somatechnical body

Pietro Conte

26 March 2024
2023/24 /ɪˈməːʃən/
111
Chiromorphisms. The technical genesis of modern disability

Alessandro Costella

15 February 2024
2023/24 /ɪˈməːʃən/
111
The Obscene Device. Archaeology of Immersive Pornographies

Roberto Malaspina

1 February 2024
2023/24 /ɪˈməːʃən/
111
Techniques of Enchantment. Magic and Contemporary Technology

Sofia Pirandello

25 January 2024
2023/24 /ɪˈməːʃən/
111
Alternative Worlds – VR without Headsets

Margherita Fontana

11 January 2024
2023/24 /ɪˈməːʃən/
111
A world of imprints. The epistemology of visual evidence in digital and virtual media-ecologies

Rosa Cinelli

21 December 2023
2023/24 /ɪˈməːʃən/
111
FEMINIST HORROR THEORY – Filmic Forms and Female Identity: Rewriting in the Key of Gender

Rossana Galimi

5 December 2023
2023/24 /ɪˈməːʃən/
111
From Photography to Virtual Reality and back again. A conversation with Francesco Jodice

Francesco Jodice

20 November 2023
2023/24 /ɪˈməːʃən/
111
Immersed in science

Ilaria Ampollini

9 November 2023
2023/24 /ɪˈməːʃən/
111
The burning gaze. An aesthetics of shame in the age of the virtual

Federica Cavaletti

2 November 2023
2023/24 /ɪˈməːʃən/
111
Forms of the intermediary: spatiality and durations between technology and aesthetics

Neda Zanetti

12 October 2023
2023/24 /ɪˈməːʃən/
111
Virtualizing Spaces: Immersive and Emersive Images from Home to City.

Fabrizia Bandi

28 September 2023
2022/23 Practices
108
LabSim: a fully featured laboratory simulator for innovative teaching of analytical chemistry
27 September 2023
2022/23 Multisensoriality
104
Immersive Rhythms, Dismersive Images: On Music Video’s Affective Atmosphere

Tomáš Jirsa

18 May 2023
2022/23 Multisensoriality
104
Spatialization of Sound

Markus Ophälders

research: Seminar

2022 Presence
98

The “Banal” Deception of Digital Presence – Projecting Life onto Media and Machines, from Turing to Siri

Simone Natale

The companion chatbot Replika is a commercial app that offers users the experience of entertaining conversation with an artificial avatar powered by software. Although most if not all users know perfectly well that Replika is not a person and is incapable of empathy and emotion, many nonetheless enjoy what they feel as the companionship of the chatbot. Their engagement with Replika evokes an apparent contradiction characterising people’s interaction with Artificial Intelligence (AI) and other digital technologies: how can one be perfectly aware that an effect of presence and liveness is just a simulation, and still be drawn to it? The talk addresses this question by considering elements of the history of AI, from the Turing Test through the first chatbot ELIZA to contemporary voice assistants such as Alexa and Siri. Presenting materials from my latest monograph, Deceitful Media: Artificial Intelligence and Social Life after the Turing Test(Oxford University Press, 2021), I will argue that behind effects of digital presence lie an ordinary, “banal” deception that allows users to feel a sense of closeness and intimacy with people who are not physically present or do not even exist.

Biography

Simone Natale, University of Turin

Simone Natale is Associate Professor at the University of Turin, Italy and Visiting Fellow at Loughborough University, UK, where he taught and researched from 2015 to 2020. He is the author of two monographs, Deceitful Media: Artificial Intelligence and Social Life after the Turing Test (Oxford University Press, 2021) and Supernatural Entertainments: Victorian Spiritualism and the Rise of Modern Media Culture (Penn State University Press, 2016), and of articles published in journals including New Media and Society, Communication Theory, the Journal of Communication, and Convergence. His research has been funded by leading international institutions including the Humboldt Foundation and the DAAD in Germany, AHRC and ESRC in the UK, and Columbia University’s Italian Academy in the US. Since 2019, he is Assistant Editor of Media, Culture & Society.

research: seminar

The “Banal” Deception of Digital Presence – Projecting Life onto Media and Machines, from Turing to Siri

Simone Natale

The companion chatbot Replika is a commercial app that offers users the experience of entertaining conversation with an artificial avatar powered by software. Although most if not all users know perfectly well that Replika is not a person and is incapable of empathy and emotion, many nonetheless enjoy what they feel as the companionship of the chatbot. Their engagement with Replika evokes an apparent contradiction characterising people’s interaction with Artificial Intelligence (AI) and other digital technologies: how can one be perfectly aware that an effect of presence and liveness is just a simulation, and still be drawn to it? The talk addresses this question by considering elements of the history of AI, from the Turing Test through the first chatbot ELIZA to contemporary voice assistants such as Alexa and Siri. Presenting materials from my latest monograph, Deceitful Media: Artificial Intelligence and Social Life after the Turing Test(Oxford University Press, 2021), I will argue that behind effects of digital presence lie an ordinary, “banal” deception that allows users to feel a sense of closeness and intimacy with people who are not physically present or do not even exist.

4 May 2022
17:00
19:00

Dipartimento di Filosofia

Sala Martinetti

Via Festa del Perdono, 7

The “Banal” Deception of Digital Presence – Projecting Life onto Media and Machines, from Turing to Siri
Simone Natale
Dipartimento di Filosofia
Sala Martinetti
Via Festa del Perdono, 7
20220504
17:00
19:00