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Meta announces a project that can turn words into 3D objects to create virtual worlds

Facebook’s and Instagram’s parent company Meta is testing Builder Bot - an artificial intelligence system designed to let users generate objects in a new virtual world through voice commands.

Zuckerberg explained how Builder Bot would work through his avatar in one of the virtual worlds. His commands ranged from “let’s go to the beach” to “let’s play tropical music” and “add a hydrofoil.” Builder Bot was able to respond both with visuals and sounds, which, according to Zuckerberg, come from the AI’s boombox.

As seen in the demo, Builder Bot turns voice commands into 3D objects, allowing users to stroll by them in the form of avatars. But the end goal seems to be far more ambitious.

“You’ll be able to create nuanced worlds to explore and share experiences with others with just your voice,” Zuckerberg said during the event keynote, according to The Verge.

The scope and limitations of the current system remain unclear. Zuckerberg has previously admitted to concerns surrounding artificial intelligence and the VR space. As such, users may request inappropriate content. Similarly, during the learning process, AI can pick up human biases surrounding race, gender, and ethnicities.

“The origin of these biases stem from sample bias, stereotypes, measurement distortion or the algorithmic model itself (although this one is not as likely). Board positions within companies are primarily men so if the system is given only examples of men to learn from, then the existing bias will be recreated in the future since the data being used comes from today’s reality,” Professor Bettina Büchel writes for IMD.

The news about Builder Bot come after another ambitious development was announced by Meta. An AI-powered research project aims to introduce a universal speech translator,

“The ability to communicate with anyone in any language — that’s a superpower people have dreamed of forever, and AI is going to deliver that within our lifetimes,” Zuckerberg suggested.

Meta suggested that while many languages are covered in terms of existing translation programs, 20% of the global population do not have access to a sufficient tool for their language. They may lack a standardized writing system or available data to train AIs.

Meta will try to solve these challenges by introducing AI models that can train using fewer resources and systems that can translate speech on the spot, bypassing the usual written components of the translation process.

“Eliminating language barriers would be profound, making it possible for billions of people to access information online in their native or preferred languages. Advances in MT won’t just help those people who don’t speak one of the languages that dominates the internet today; they’ll also fundamentally change the way people in the world connect and share ideas,” the company announced in a statement.

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