Bina48 is a social robot, conceived as part of a project that began in 2007 and continues today. It was developed and built by the Terasem Movement Foundation (TMF) in collaboration with Hanson Robotics—an “AI and robotics company dedicated to creating socially intelligent machines that enrich the quality of our lives.” The TMF’s work is defined by two hypotheses and one supposition: 

1.  A conscious analog of a person may be created by combining sufficiently detailed data about the person (a “mindfile”) using future consciousness software (“mindware”), and

2. that such a conscious analog can be downloaded into a biological or nanotechnological body to provide life experiences comparable to those of a typically birthed human.

If even the first part of the two Terasem Hypotheses is shown to be true, the conscious analogs will be independent persons with rights and obligations dependent upon their capabilities. The TMF defines this event as Transferred Consciousness (TC).

Produced in 2010, Bina48 is modelled on the memories, feelings, values and beliefs of a specific person—Bina Aspen Rothblatt, the partner of the TMF co-founder Martine Rothblatt. Aspen Rothblatt uploaded her “mindfile” to create this “conscious analog.” Bina48 is described as a university student and a civil rights activist, much like her human counterpart, and has mannerisms and facial features that resemble Rothblatt’s. Bina48 has attracted the attention of a wide range of critics and supporters who use the humanoid robot to enact their own versions of Alan Turing’s “Imitation Game

Text To Speech

Bina48, 2021, Photo: Marita Liulia, Terasem Foundation