'Britbot' by Libby Heaney
An interactive online artwork by Libby Heaney, based around an AI computer bot programmed on the citizenship book 'Life in the UK: a guide for new residents' as well as classic British texts on social mores, literature and history. The Bot will then produce its own "test" for the public to take - and see how British they are.
But it doesn’t stop there. As more people interact with the Bot, the Bot will ‘learn’ from them via complicated algorithms known as deep neural networks and change according to people’s responses. It will learn new words and forms of speech - and gain knowledge of British thoughts.
The Britbot was shown at various festivals and events including the Sheffield Doc Fest 2018, Cognition X Festival London 2018 (curated by Luba Elliott), Edinburgh TV Festival 2018, V&A Digital Design Weekend 2018 and Openfest:Art 50 at the Barbican in February 2019.
When the project ends, there will be a non-live version of the Britbot with a report that tells us something about the different communities that have taken the test. The report will be published in book form and also continue to live online.
LIBBY HEANEY is an artist from Tamworth in Staffordshire who studied at Central St Martins, teaches at the Royal College of Art and has exhibited at the Tate Modern amongst other places. Before this though, she studied quantum physics and retains an interest in that world – running the Systems Research Group at the RCA. She also holds a residency at Somerset House Studios.