Suprahuman is the product of a collaboration between William Wiebe and Dr. John Santerre, a computer scientist working on the development of scalable machine learning techniques for use on cancer and antimicrobial resistance.

In the case of Apple’s I.V.R. support system, for example, the progression of technology has outpaced my own relationship with it. When the voice of Apple prompts me today to speak in complete sentences, I find myself constrained to a few words, spoken as robotically as I can manage, as if the machine will respond more gracefully to one of its own. The robot has exceeded my own naturalism: it happily plays me the sound of typing as it seeks to understand me, as if it were busily finding me an answer, rather than merely attempting to understand the question. Sharing the world with robots has changed me, just as it changed a disgruntled employee of the New York City Health Department. The employee, Ronald Dillon, took to expressing his frustration with his demotion by answering the phone in the affect of an I.V.R., presaging, perhaps, his own obsolescence (he was suspended twice without pay on the charge of speaking in a “deliberately robotic fashion”). But how have robots changed in the course of sharing the world with me?…

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