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As robots and virtual assistants continue to increase in sophistication, one area remains problematic: voices.

Familiar voices like Apple’s Siri and Amazon’s Alexa are a marked improvement over the flat, canned responses of just a decade ago. But they’re not going to fool anyone into thinking they are actual humans. Montreal-based Lyrebird wants to change that.

By harnessing the power of artificial intelligence and deep-learning algorithms, Lyrebird is teaching computers to mimicking existing voices. A sample from the company recreates the voices of Barack Obama, Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton.

Of course, this opens up the ethical dilemma of what happens when recreated voices are used for nefarious purposes like confusing voice identification systems.

“We hope that everyone will soon be aware that such technology exists and that copying the voice of someone else is possible,” Lyrebird’s website reads.

Tackling the ethics of emerging technology is a topic you can learn at a STEM university.

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Source: Scientific American

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