When you’re a talented computer programmer with billions of dollars at your disposal, the possibilities for new inventions increase significantly. Just look at Tony Stark. Not only did the man successfully run Stark Industries for many years, but he also created numerous Iron Man suits in an effort to protect the world. Now Facebook co-founder and chief executive Mark Zuckerberg wants to follow in Tony’s footsteps, but not by creating high-tech, weaponized armor. No, he has his eye on artificial intelligence, like Tony Stark’s favorite assistant J.A.R.V.I.S.
In a recent Facebook post (because writing on Tumblr would have just looked weird), Zuckerberg addressed how each year he likes to take on a personal challenge to "learn new things" and help with his work outside of Facebook. This year, his goal is to build his own A.I. to help with certain tasks. He explained:
My personal challenge for 2016 is to build a simple AI to run my home and help me with my work. You can think of it kind of like Jarvis in Iron Man. I'm going to start by exploring what technology is already out there. Then I'll start teaching it to understand my voice to control everything in our home -- music, lights, temperature and so on.
Other functions Mark Zuckerberg will aim for his A.I. to do include letting friends in when they ring the doorbell by looking at their faces, checking what’s going on in his daughter Max’s room when he’s not with her, and helping him "visualize VR" (virtual reality) on the work side of things. This project lines up with the "invention" theme of his challenge this year, and Zuckerberg ended the post by saying how it will be a fun challenge to code this, and he’ll share what he learns as 2016 progresses.
If Iron Man 4 would come sooner rather than later, the movie could have include a Mark Zuckerberg cameo where he asks Tony for some pointers. After all, Elon Musk cameoed in Iron Man 2. Still, if Zuckerberg is successful in this endeavor, his next goal will probably be trying to download that A.I. into an multi-colored android body. That will likely be far more difficult to accomplish than it was in Avengers: Age of Ultron.
Building one A.I. is an impressive feat, but Tony Stark has actually built several. After J.A.R.V.I.S. became The Vision, Tony rifled through several replacement programs for his armor, including one named Tadashi. His new interface ended up being F.R.I.D.A.Y., who, voiced by Kerry Condon, sounds like an Irish woman. Evidently Tony likes interacting with European folks when working around the house and battling the bad guys. While it’s doubtful Mark Zuckerberg’s A.I. will sound anywhere near as dignified (or sarcastic) as J.A.R.V.I.S., if his project is a success, Tony will need to up his game. Yes, his suits are impressive, but in terms of just computer programming, the genius billionaire playboy philanthropist can certainly takes things to a new level. So, what’s your next move, Tony?