Published:  02:00 AM, 07 December 2017 Last Update: 02:05 AM, 07 December 2017

Huge crowd at Digital Expo

Huge crowd at Digital Expo Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina at a stall in the Digital World Exposition at Bangabandhu International Conference Center in the city yesterday. -AA

Thousands of people flocked Bangabandhu International Conference Centre (BICC) here on Wednesday, just to have a glimpse of Sophia, the world's first artificially intelligent citizen. Organizers said they had to start the public session, 'Techtalk with Sophia', session half an hour behind the schedule due to the unmanageable crowd as they created huge noise at the venue.

Sophia finally interacted with visitors at the expo from 2:30pm to 4:30pm which enthralled the youngsters. Hong Kong-based Hanson Robotics Ltd created Sophia having the expressiveness, liveliness, and interactivity features in it. Mahboob, Saiful and Tamara like many other youths participated in the session and expressed their joy to have a chance to get glimpse of the humanoid robot.

"It was really an amazing experience to be able to talk to a robot that doesn't only have a human-like body shape but also the facial expression and intelligence. She also answered to many questions about Bangladesh which surprised me much," Shahnaj, a student of East West University, said. 

"I've lost those who came here with me as the crowd has gone into frenzy. My mobile network is not working due to the huge crowd and I cannot contact them either," said Rajon who came from Mirpur.

Replying to a question from State Minister for ICT Junaid Ahmed Palak at the event Sophia said, "It's possible to recreate a social robot in Bangladesh." The humanoid robot also talked about Jamdani sari, a Bangladesh pride, and described it as one of its finest fabrics.

Sophia, who arrived here on Monday night, made the remarks at the public session, arranged as part of the 4-day Digital World Exposition at the BICC. Sophia was given Saudi citizenship earlier this year, making her the first robot ever to get such a status from a country.

The ICT Division in collaboration with Bangladesh Association of Software and Information Services (BASIS) organized the exposition. Earlier in the day, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina inaugurated the event and exchanged greetings with Sophia.

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