‘Love and Sex with Robots’ conference in Malaysia this November

The second international congress on ‘Love and Sex with Robots’ (LSR) will be held on November 16 at the Black Box and White Box arts complex in Medini Mall in Johor's Iskandar region. — Screengrab from the LSR website

KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 30 — Academics will gather in Malaysia for a “Love and Sex with Robots” conference this November to dissect the legal, ethical and moral issues on the topic, Australian portal news.com.au reported.

The second international congress on “Love and Sex with Robots” (LSR) will be chaired by City University London’s Prof Adrian Cheok and Intelligent Toys Limited’s chief executive officer Dr David Levy, the news site said.

A check by Malay Mail Online on the congress’ website revealed that LSR 2015 will be held on November 16 in the Black Box and White Box arts complex in Medini Mall in Johor’s Iskandar economic region, next to the state’s Legoland Malaysia attraction.

The planned discussion topics listed on the website include robot emotions, humanoid robots, clone robots, entertainment robots, robot personalities, teledildonics and intelligent electronic sex hardware.

Various approaches to this topic including that of the gender, philosophical, sociological, psychological approaches are expected to be discussed, along with roboethics.

The congress is said to be part of the Advances in Computer Entertainment Technology 2015 Conferences, while the website also features the logos of the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) and the SIGCHI society for human-technology and human-computer interaction.

The website also features the logo of Tourism Malaysia’s “Malaysia Year of Festivals 2015” (MYFEST) campaign that carries the theme of “Endless Celebrations”, but the link provided to it is defunct.

Information on tours in Johor as part of the LSR 2015 event was also provided, with heritage sites and other places in the Johor Bahru City Centre, Nusajaya, Western Gate Development, Eastern Gate Development, Kulai and Senai listed as tourist spots.

According to news.com.au, Cheok, an Australian academic who specialises in human-computer interface, believes robots will become part of humans’ lives as friends, sex objects and carers.

“We really don’t know how human society will react. The worst case scenario is that people begin to have a robot partner rather than a human partner,” he said, but added that he thinks most people will prefer to have “real human relationship” and with only a minority opting for robots over humans.

Levy, who also wrote the 2007 book “Love and Sex with Robots”, reportedly said that it won’t be long before humans manage to develop life-like robots with appealing looks, with the question then being how long it would take for artificial intelligence to be developed to a point where robots can carry interesting conversations.

“It just takes one famous person to say I had fantastic sex with a robot and you’ll have people queuing up from New York to California,” he was quoted saying.

“If you’ve got a robot that looks like a human, feels like a human, behaves like a human, talks like a human why shouldn’t people find it appealing?”

He also believed that sex with robots could help lonely people and address the issue of paedophilia, noting: “For whatever reason there are huge numbers of people who just don’t have a relationship with someone they can love and someone who can love them.”

“For people like that, I think that sex robots will be a real boon. It will get rid of a problem they’ve got, fill a big void in their lives and make them much happier.”

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