Robot sophia
Sophia robot expresses hopes of starting a family REUTERS/Denis Balibouse

Sophia, the humanoid robot, which made headlines after receiving Saudi citizenship last month, has now expressed hopes of starting a family and having a career for itself sometime in future.

In an interview with the Khaleej Times, Sophia answered a number of questions revolving around the future of robots, humans, and the relationship between the two. The bot, which has been designed to look like Audrey Hepburn, said it believes robots also deserve to start a family just like humans.

"The future is, when I get all of my cool superpowers, we're going to see artificial intelligence personalities become entities in their own rights," Sophia said while stressing this is one of its favourite topics.

"We're going to see family robots, either in the form of, sort of, digitally animated companions, humanoid helpers, friends, assistants and everything in between".

The 19-month-old robot added that the notion of family "is a really important thing" and it is "wonderful that people can find the same emotions and relationships, they call family, outside of their blood groups too".

Built by Hanson Robotics, Sophia is not programmed with answers like these, but uses machine learning to read a person's expression and reply accordingly, per BBC. It also has a vocabulary of several thousand words.

When asked what name it would like to give to its robot-child, Sophia interestingly got back with her own name.

Among other things, the humanoid robot also spoke about the sensitive issue of bots joining humans at work. It said robots will be similar to humans in many ways, but different too in some ways.

Sophia imagined a future where robots' "rational mind with intellectual superpowers" will complement humans' "creative mind with flexible ideas". As for similarities and differences, it noted, with future advancements bots could have complex human-like emotions, but they could be made more ethical by excluding emotions like rage, hatred and jealousy.

Just last month Sophia became a citizen of Saudi Arabia, something that sparked a debate on whether machines have more rights than women in the kingdom.

Saudi women are subjected to male guardianship and are required to wear a loose garment called an abaya and a headscarf, as per the country's strict dress code. They are not allowed to travel, marry, or even open a bank account alone.