The Touchy Feely Sensory Internet

A lot of people like the internet. Suppose the internet grew feelings and decided to like them back. It is a weird, intriguing and far-fetched idea, but not really. And, it is probably a place that we are moving towards.

More and more computing will be done in the cloud -- somewhere on the internet. Our connection to the internet will be at the appliance level. This means that it will be a small device without a lot of compute horsepower. All of the heavy lifting in terms of processing cycles will be done on the internet. The appliance will behave more like a TV than a computer.

In the meantime, the internet is getting smarter and smarter about knowing you. Almost every website that you go to, tracks who you are, what you are reading on the internet, and what your likes and dislikes are. The reason that this is already happening is so that ads can be targeted at you you, that have a decent chance of you clicking on them.

If you take this to the nth degree, the internet will soon be able to recognize you when you sit down to surf the web, or do whatever you do on the internet.

The second major piece to the emotional, sensory component of the internet, is the sentient computer software bot that recognizes emotions. Why would these be developed? Simple. E-Commerce. Customer service agents on the web will be computerized software bots that will be able to recognize human emotion, and respond appropriately to it. They will be able to sooth and calm angry customers. And they are a lot cheaper than having human operators sit at computers 24 hours a day waiting for complaints.

It will be a short step to combine the knowledge that the internet knows about you with a sentient, emotional computer robot to make the emotionally sensory internet. For some people, the internet will be their first and last emotional interaction of the day. This will alleviate human loneliness, and many many people will jump on it. Perhaps emotional interaction with the internet will be more satisfying than emotional interactions with humans. The ego won't get in the way.

The real question is whether or not humans will care if the emotions are computer generated or come from the brain of a human being. I am guessing that they won't. After all, I am a regular man, and I don't care if women today fake it on any scale-- I just don't want to know. I will continue to believe that they don't.

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