Mark Zuckerberg’s New Year’s resolution is to build an AI assistant

Marcy Oster

(JTA) — Zuckerberg has made his 2016 New Year’s resolution public on Facebook: to code his own simple AI to run his home and help him with his work.

He said in a post Sunday that he will teach his “simple AI” to control everything in his home using voice controls, to let friends in by identifying their faces when they ring the doorbell and to keep him updated on what is going on in his baby daughter Max’s room when he is not there.

He also said he would use his creation for work to help him “build better services and lead my organizations more effectively.”

“[I]t’s a different kind of rewarding to build things yourself, so this year my personal challenge is to do that,” Zuckerberg said. “This should be a fun intellectual challenge to code this for myself.”

He promised to share what he learns over the course of the year. In response to a comment on the post, Zuckerberg asked for suggestions for a name for his AI.

In response to another comments, he said he does not envision inventing something that would usher in a doomsday scenario. “I think we can build AI so it works for us and helps us. Some people fear-monger about how AI is a huge danger, but that seems far-fetched to me and much less likely than disasters due to widespread disease, violence, etc.,” he said.

Previous “personal challenges” have included reading two books every month, learning Mandarin and meeting a new person every day.

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