Peter Molyneux's Milo returns from hiding

It has been a long time since Milo’s first appearance at E3 2009. Hopes that Milo would make an appearance during Microsoft’s E3 2010 press conference last month were dashed when Molyneux’s virtual child prodigy was a no-show.  Ever since that time, we have heard conflicting reports about Milo’s fate. Today, those rumors can be put to rest.

Milo is a virtual boy that was created by Peter Molyneux for the Kinect for Xbox 360. He was designed to demonstrate what the Kinect is capable of. During the Microsoft E3 2009 press conference, Milo was unvieled in a video demonstration that showed him recognizing a drawing that was created and shown to him and seemingly having full blown conversations with the person that was interacting with him.

According to Kotaku via the Official TEDGlobal 2010 Twitter page, “Peter Molyneux appeared on stage today at the TEDGlobal 2010 to show off Milo, the virtual boy for Microsoft's Kinect that failed to make an appearance at E3 2010.” The demo that was shown wasn’t pre-recorded as it was during Microsoft’s E3 2009 press conference. Molyneux invited someone on stage to help him demonstrate Milo live.

While demonstrating Milo, Molyneux and his assistant taught Milo several new tricks including how to skip rocks and how to clean his room. Milo even expressed sadness about one of the things that he had done. Molyneux even went as far as to ask Milo to crush a small snail. After pondering the action for a moment, Milo did proceed to follow Molyneux’s instruction. Molyneux concluded the demonstration with the following statement: “I love these revolutions and I love the future that Milo brings.” We may not have seen much of him, but now we can at least be sure that Milo is alive and well.

TED has not, at the time of writing, put the footage online, so here's a quick reminder of the original E3 2009 demo of Milo:

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13 Comments

Sebianoti said,
I Missed Milo, For me its the thing that made Kinect what it is today. Without it Microsoft can punch them selves, i mean c'mon getting rid of Milo is the worst thing Microsoft can do.

Umm ... they aren't ?

Ok, this is freaky.
From BBC news:
"Mr Molyneux said Milo had been built using artificial intelligence developed by his firm Lionhead studios"
"No two people's Milos can be the same - you are actually sculpting a human being. Some of the things you are doing will change the course of his life."

And then this is the most scary part:
"His mind is based in the cloud," he told the audience. "As millions of people use it, Milo will get smarter."

Milo = Skynet!

Roberticus said,
Ok, this is freaky.
From BBC news:
"Mr Molyneux said Milo had been built using artificial intelligence developed by his firm Lionhead studios"
"No two people's Milos can be the same - you are actually sculpting a human being. Some of the things you are doing will change the course of his life."

And then this is the most scary part:
"His mind is based in the cloud," he told the audience. "As millions of people use it, Milo will get smarter."

Milo = Skynet!

LOL Wow! I will take my T-1000 to go please! As far as Milo = Skynet, how about Milo = XNet? Sound better? Also, as far as the last part, if his mind is in the cloud would it mean that it is in the gutter?

These two quotes don't really make sense to me when combined:

"No two people's Milos can be the same"


"His mind is based in the cloud," he told the audience. "As millions of people use it, Milo will get smarter."

If his mind is in the cloud, and he gets smarter as millions of people use it, how can there be different Milos?

dodgetigger said,
These two quotes don't really make sense to me when combined:


If his mind is in the cloud, and he gets smarter as millions of people use it, how can there be different Milos?

Because the system as a whole learns from everyone's interactions, actions and reactions, etc to teach the system how people use the game and therefore the developers can program and learn what people want and how and where to go with the game. I'm thinking that's what they mean't but that's my opinion.

dodgetigger said stuff

I'm sure the "Milos" will statistically send information, and receive that stats back, doing what "most" people teach him, but not everything... The other stuff that's not generalized is more personal.
So, by teaching things less conventional , the more "personal" he will be - i'm guessing. But it isn't interesting if your Milo isn't just a bit different from you, so that's where the difference has to be done, talking to yourself or a mind-clone is never fun after a while.

Chrono951 said,
This whole project is kinda creepy. Asking Milo to kill....

I wonder what kind of character you can create if you get someone that wants to have an evil Milo. Of if Milo can swear if you teach him lol

It's basically an evolution of Black & White's creature. The interesting new part is the language recognition and of course the interaction with Kinect.

However, in this video the voice doesn't sound artificial : it sounds recorder. This greatly limits the number of actions possible.

And speaking of "creapy", this is nothing compared to the old "Creatures", out in 96. In this game each creature had thousands of artificial neurons, a complex bio-chemical system, and all that coded in an artificial DNA which means they could evolve by sexual reproduction. That was the most realistic artificial life I've seen in video games.

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