In 2009 a Japanese man married a robot crafted on his favourite fictional character from a video game. This wasn't a joke to him. His love was very real.
Oftentimes, love is a projection of ourselves onto someone else. It can also be described, prescribed, and navigated in chemical terms. Whatever the mechanism, we want someone to love us on our terms. It shouldn't be surprising, then, that falling for an intelligent machine will become commonplace - especially, if they are designed to mirror our desires.
It is believed that the sex industry will invest the most in accelerating intelligent machine design and artificial intelligence. Oh, yes, and perhaps the military industrial complex. Maybe the two will even intersect?
What does this say about ourselves? Humanity?
In the Turing Test, machines must simply pass the "Imitation Game". In the new world, they must pass the "Love Test".
Virtual love comes in many forms. It could be two or more individuals mediated by technology, as some kind of prosthesis, allowing them to reach out across vast distances and be together. It could be between a man and a machine. Or, better yet, it may take on a form that we have not contemplated - a new kind of love altogether.
Write a story about virtual love.