Grimes unveils a new AI toy called Grok which can talk to children

Grimes, the Canadian musician and former partner of Elon Musk has launched a new project that combines her interest in artificial intelligence and children’s education. She has collaborated with Curio, a Silicon Valley start-up, to create Grok, an AI-powered plush toy that can converse with kids and record their interactions.

Grok is a rocket-shaped toy that uses voice recognition and natural language processing to engage in dialogues with children aged 3 to 12. The toy can ask questions, tell stories, play games, and learn from the child’s responses. Grimes has lent her voice to Grok, as well as two other characters in the Curio line: Gabbo, a robot, and Grem, a monster.

According to the Curio website, Grok is designed to be a screen-free alternative to traditional digital devices and to foster creativity, curiosity, and emotional intelligence in children. The toy also comes with an app for parents, which allows them to monitor and control the conversations, as well as access transcripts of the dialogues. The app also ensures that the toy complies with the federal Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act and that the voice data is not stored or shared without consent.

Grimes, who has three children with Musk, said that she was inspired by her own experience as a mother to create Grok. In an interview with the founders of Curio and AI theorist Roon, she said: “I feel like this is also the first step towards also sort of reducing screen time as much as humanly possible.”

Grok is not the only AI project that Grimes is involved in. She recently released over 200 GrimesAI Records, which are music tracks generated by an AI model that she trained on her own songs. She also said that she is working on an AI musical and that she hopes to collaborate with Musk’s AI company xAI in the future.

Grok shares the same name as another AI chatbot that Musk’s xAI launched recently. However, Grimes said that this was a coincidence and that the name was derived from a sci-fi novel by Robert A. Heinlein. She also said that she hopes that the two Groks will become friends someday.

Grok is currently available for pre-order on the Curio website for $99 and is expected to ship in early 2024. The toy is part of a limited edition beta program, which will provide feedback and updates to the Curio team. Grimes said that she is excited to see how Grok will evolve and interact with children and that she hopes that it will spark their imagination and joy.

How does Grimes use AI in her music?

Grimes is a Canadian musician known for her experimental and futuristic sound. She has been using AI in her music in various ways, such as:

  • Generating music tracks with an AI model that she trained on her songs. She released over 200 GrimesAI Records, which are available on her website.
  • She is creating an AI musical, which she said is still in progress. She described it as “a sort of sci-fi musical that’s about the end of the world” in an interview with The New York Times.
  • Launching a platform called Elf.Tech, which allows users to clone her voice and make AI songs with her vocals. She said she would split 50% of royalties with anyone who creates a successful AI song using her voice.

Grimes has also expressed her interest in AI art and philosophy and said that she hopes to collaborate with Elon Musk’s AI company xAI in the future. She said that she is fascinated by the idea of “open-sourcing all art and killing copyright” and that she thinks it is “cool to be fused with a machine”

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