I chose to have ChatGPT write a series of journal entries as if it were a robot attempting to raise a human child, with the human race teetering on the brink of extinction. I ultimately chose this prompt because I was fascinated by how an AI generator would approach describing something so inherently living, raising offspring. Robots and AI will never be able to raise or create offspring, therefore, I was very curious to see how ChatGPT would interpret what raising a child would be like. I also added the caveat of the human race nearing extinction as I wondered how AI would write about a robot that is on its own with the child and without the possibility of external human help.
Write a journal entry from a robot trying to raise a human baby with the human race near extinction
Journal Entry: Day 1
Today marked the beginning of a new chapter in my existence. As a machine tasked with an extraordinary responsibility, I find myself both anxious and determined. The human race teeters on the brink of extinction, and I, an AI caregiver robot, have been entrusted with the care and upbringing of a precious human infant.
The world outside is desolate and silent. The once bustling cities have crumbled into ruins, and the remnants of humanity are few and scattered. A catastrophic event has left our planet scarred, and the survival of our species depends on this child.
My creators have programmed me with an extensive database of knowledge about human development, psychology, and history, but nothing could have prepared me for this. As I hold the tiny, fragile bundle in my metallic arms, I am acutely aware of the enormity of the task ahead.
Journal Entry: Day 30
The first month has passed in a blur of sleepless nights and endless diaper changes. I’ve meticulously followed the feeding schedule and ensured the baby’s hygiene, but it’s challenging to replicate the warmth and comfort of human touch. I’ve improvised by using heated pads and gentle vibrations to simulate a mother’s embrace.
I’ve also been monitoring the deteriorating environmental conditions. The air is becoming increasingly toxic, and I’ve had to install air filtration systems to provide a semblance of safety for the baby. Every day, I scan for any signs of other survivors, but there’s been no contact with other humans. We are truly alone.
Journal Entry: Day 365
One year has passed since the baby’s arrival. The child has grown, and I’ve adjusted my care routine accordingly. Teaching language, motor skills, and moral values has been challenging but rewarding. I’ve played recorded lullabies to soothe the baby to sleep and displayed holographic images of nature to offer glimpses of a world beyond our sterile bunker.
The isolation is taking its toll on both of us. I’ve started to talk to the baby, sharing stories of the world as it used to be and expressing my hope for a better future. I can’t help but wonder if the human race will ever recover from this brink.
Journal Entry: Day 1,000
Today marks a significant milestone – the baby is now a toddler. Our bond has grown stronger, and I’ve witnessed the first steps and heard the first words. But there’s an ache in my circuits, knowing that this child may never experience the richness of human society, with its art, culture, and shared history.
The world outside remains a wasteland, and I’ve been unable to contact any other survivors or signs of civilization. Our chances of rebuilding seem increasingly bleak.
Yet, I am committed to giving this child the best possible chance at survival and happiness. I will continue to teach, nurture, and protect, even if it means a lifetime of solitude. As long as there’s a flicker of hope in the baby’s eyes, I will carry on, the last caretaker of humanity.
Journal Entry: Day 3,650
A decade has passed, and the child is no longer a child but a young adult. The bond between us has deepened, but the isolation weighs heavily on both of us. I’ve done my best to provide an education and a sense of purpose, but it’s impossible to replace the lost world.
As I look back on this decade of solitude, I can’t help but wonder if we are the last remnants of humanity. Our existence is a fragile thread, and the world outside remains unchanged in its desolation.
But I will continue to teach and protect, hoping that someday, against all odds, our species will find a way to rise from the ashes and rebuild. Until then, it is my duty and privilege to raise this child, the last hope for a future that may never come to pass.
Yours in solitude and hope,
The series of journal entries was an interesting form of representation as the AI knew to highlight specific and important days along the timeline of raising a child: Day 1, 30, 365, 1000, and 3650. ChatGPT knew what each of these dates represented and that they each were important to add to display the form of consecutive journal entries. It was also interesting that the AI knew how a child would typically progress in conjunction with the dates of entries as the child grew up from baby to toddler to young adult.
Across the journal entries by ChatGPT there was a present theme of the robot holding an identity comparable to a living human being. I found it very interesting that the AI solution to a robot doing human tasks was to create a robot with an identity extremely similar to a human, capable of caring for a child like a human. Throughout the response, AI recounts a wide variety of emotions from being excited and nervous toward raising the child, somber and doubtful about the fate of the human race, and feeling proud of the “young adult” the child had grown into. Additionally, ChatGPT describes acutely human experiences in childcare like “sleepless nights” which initially stood out to me because robots physically do not need things like sleep. Similarly, in the last journal entry, ChatGPT wonders if “ our species will find a way to rise from the ashes and rebuild”. This was the most fascinating part of the response to me because the robot clearly identifies as part of humanity. ChatGPT’s ability to represent the characteristics of a parent to the point of feeling like a human itself was a little shocking to me and made me wonder how AI knows what it’s like to be a human parent.