Amazon Says Software May Let Us Understand Our Pets

Amazon-funded researcher William Higham says it may be possible to understand your pets in the near future.

The Guardian reports that Higham was commissioned by Amazon to produce a report that concluded that pet translation devices are viable.

Higham says thanks to advances in artificial intelligence, devices used to understand dogs may arrive in less than a decade.

“Innovative products that succeed are based around a genuine and major consumer needs. The amount of money now spent on pets – they are becoming fur babies to so many people – means there is huge consumer demand for this.”

Professor emeritus of biology at the University of Arizona, Con Slobodchikoff, conducted research in prairie dog vocalizations and behavior using artificial intelligence suggest they have language.

"[Animals] have words for different species of predator and can describe the color of clothes of a human, or the coat of coyotes or dogs.” 

Slobodchikoff is also the director of the Animal Language Institute, which holds to the view that animals can speak with enough skill sufficient to get along in the world.

“Although it has not been proven that animal communication follows rules, that animals are aware of themselves or others, or that they deliberately communicate to manipulate their environment or other animals … enough evidence exists to point to the possibility that animals might have languages that meet their needs as well as our languages meet our needs.”

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