There has been some amazing technology introduced over the last couple decades. You don't need to look further than the smartphone in your pocket or the palm of your hand for proof. These incredible gadgets are more powerful than some desktop computers from the early 1990s.
One thing that I love using my smartphone for is video chatting with friends and family who live thousands of miles away. But what about "chatting" with a loved one who has passed on? Soon, there will be an app for that.
How a new app can help "resurrect" loved ones
What we're talking about is an app set to be released later this year by tech company ObEN. The app will use a photograph, along with voice recordings, to create a realistic 3D avatar of that person. Once the avatar is generated, you can interact with it virtually.
The company wrote on its site, "Founded in 2014 by Nikhil Jain and Adam Zheng, ObEN was created out of a personal desire for the founders to remain connected to their families by 'leaving behind' a virtual copy of themselves during long travels. With the rapid development of social media connectivity, AR, VR and IoT, ObEN's suite of artificial intelligence products humanizes and personalizes your digital experiences."
The avatars will improve over time by using machine learning software. The more you interact with your own avatar, the more accurate it will portray your personality.
Nikhil Jain told the Pasadena Star, "You can just take a quick selfie and a small sample of your voice and we combine it for you. It makes a very personalized avatar which is speaking in your voice and moving like you.
"Once we have your voice-print we can actually create new content in your voice, which would be attached to your avatar. And it can be employed into different scenarios. So you could actually tell this avatar, read a book to put my kids to sleep."
Image: Example of 3D avatar of founder Nikhil Jain created by ObEN technology. (Source: ObEN)
An exact release date for the app has yet to be announced. However, ObEN said it will be sometime later this year. It won't be long before you're able to share your own avatar creation with friends and family and interact virtually.