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May 12

Revolutionary Digital Humans: Transforming the World in the Era of AI and Virtual Reality

David Gillham

Imagine having a digital version of yourself that interacts with your friends, attends work meetings, and tries on new clothes. But that's not all, there are other digital humans too! Your doctor can examine you thoroughly, your yoga instructor is available 24/7, and there's even a salesperson to help you choose a new car. We already communicate with technology on a daily basis, but something's missing. Did you know that 55% of communication is body language, 38% is tonality, and only 7% is words? That's why digital humans are about to revolutionise our virtual interactions and have a huge impact on businesses and society. They look, act, and think like real humans, and they can even nod, wink, and roll their eyes. Technology already allows us to use digital humans in our communications, and soon everyone will have their own digital twin. So let's dive deeper into this exciting topic!

Imagine having a digital replica of yourself that can attend work meetings, interact with your friends, and even try on new clothes. And it's not just you - there are digital doctors, yoga instructors, and even salespeople ready to help you choose your dream car. We already communicate with technology every day, but what's missing is that uniquely human emotional connection. That's where digital humans come in. 

These lifelike beings look, act, and think like real humans, combining a realistic appearance with the ability to listen and understand meanings. They not only speak, but also nod, wink, and roll their eyes - humanising our virtual interactions like never before. 

With technology already allowing us to use digital humans in our communications, it's only a matter of time before everyone has their own digital twin. And this radical transformation in our online communication is set to largely impact businesses and society. So let's delve deeper into this exciting topic and see what the future holds!

What are digital humans?

Have you ever wondered what digital humans are? 🤔 In short, they are human-like virtual beings that represent oneself in different virtual situations. So, are they like avatars? 🤖 Yes, digital humans are a subcategory of avatars. A digital avatar is an electronic image that is manipulated by the user. Digital humans, however, look just like real people! 🤩 From simple illustrations to digital twins, our online representations are getting more and more sophisticated, and the avatar economy is on the rise. 

Digital humans are designed so that other digital avatars or real people can interact with them, and their human likeness combined with artificial intelligence (AI) makes communication feel more real. This has a huge potential to radically change our online interactions. 

When we talk about digital humans, there are two possible identities they represent:

  • A digital human can be a digital twin of a real person (based on their anatomical, physical, and biological traits)
  • A digital human can be a fictional character (based on the appearance of an actor or entirely generated by computer)

Isn't that cool? 🤩 Let's explore the world of digital humans and see how they can change our online interactions!

What do digital humans do?

Have you ever wondered what digital humans do? 🤔

Well, the goal of digital humans is to recreate human interaction — and do it at scale. After all, we're social creatures and crave interactions with others. 

That's why many companies have recognised the potential of adding a character or a mascot to their communication. Just think of Siri, Duo from Duolingo or the famous Clippy who helped us navigate computers in the 90s. 🤓

But digital humans go beyond chatbots and digital assistants. Because they can communicate via verbal and nonverbal cues, they are used for various scenarios: they can help us find answers online, guide us through various processes, give advice, and more.

Research indicates that people can better relate to digital humans that have a more realistic appearance. At the moment, the most realistic digital humans are the ones by Colossyan – besides verbal communication, they can also communicate via non-verbal cues, such as facial microgestures (winking, nodding, frowning…). However, realistic full-body avatars are still a work in progress.

Digital humans are rapidly entering our everyday lives, especially in the form of conversational AI. 🤖 According to Emergen Research, the global market for digital humans will grow from $10 billion in 2020 to about $530 billion in 2030. 

Digital Human Avatar Market

Imagine a world where digital twins can try on clothes and make-up, hang out with friends, and even attend work meetings — all in the virtual world. 🤩 That's the future of digital humans!

Where are digital humans used?

Have you ever wondered where digital humans are used? Well, the answer is that they are used in a variety of areas! Because they are able to replicate real-world communication on a large scale, digital humans are becoming increasingly popular.

From customer support representatives and instructors for training and education to virtual assistants in healthcare and characters in the entertainment industry, digital humans are everywhere. Plus, they are also used as presenters in marketing and sales videos, as well as digital influencers.

As digital humans become more and more realistic and emotionally intelligent, the number of use cases for them is growing. In fact, we believe that soon each of us will have our own digital twin – and with the great technological advances being made every day, this is becoming more and more achievable!

How do you make a digital human using artificial intelligence?

Are you ready to create a digital human using artificial intelligence? It's easier than you may think!

From using a scanner to create a 3D model of a real person to using software to create a 3D model from scratch, the process of creating a digital human is the same. And with a little help from AI, you can get a photorealistic look, movements, and verbal component.

Ready to get started? All you need is 15 minutes of footage of yourself speaking on camera, preferably in a professional studio (for better quality). But don't worry, if you don't have access to a studio, you can also use your webcam! Then, send it over to professional avatar creators and your digital twin will be ready within a few days.

If you're not comfortable being on camera, you can also opt for a "stock" digital human. These are not representations of yourself, but they are based on actors. So, go ahead and create your own digital human today!

What are the technologies used in developing digital humans?

Are you curious about what technologies are used to create digital humans? 🤔 It's incredible how they can look and act so much like a real person, with realistic body language, micro gestures, facial expressions, and other nonverbal cues. But it's not just their physical appearance that makes them so impressive - their ability to understand and use language is equally impressive. 🧠 So, let's take a look at the complex combination of technologies that make digital humans possible:

  • 3D scanning to serve as a basis for 3D modeling
  • 3D modeling to create a 3D model of a person
  • Natural language processing to understand voice commands
  • Natural language generation to form responses
  • Artificial intelligence to process input and learn from patterns 

The biggest challenge for developers?

That's right - the uncanny valley. The uncanny valley is a phenomenon that occurs when a synthetic human looks and acts almost like a real human, but there is something slightly off that makes them seem unreal. This can cause a feeling of unease or even revulsion in people who encounter them. However, as technology continues to advance, it's likely that the uncanny valley effect will gradually disappear and digital people will become indistinguishable from real people.

Why do we need digital humans?

Have you ever thought about why digital humans are becoming more and more prevalent in online communication? Well, let us tell you - they're pretty amazing! Not only do they have real business value (think virtual assistants and digital employees), but they're also a cornerstone of our digital identities in the virtual world. Here's why:

  • They're available 24/7, need no vacation days, no salary, and no sleep.
  • They're a scalable and affordable solution for businesses.
  • They enhance our online interactions by combining verbal and non-verbal cues.
  • They're accessible, as they can easily switch between languages and cultural contexts.
  • They ensure anonymity when communicating about sensitive topics.
  • They redefine the way people communicate with technology and with each other.

In short, digital humans add a human connection to the virtual world, improve our communication, and thus make our (digital) lives better. Plus, have you ever heard of the Proteus effect? It's named after the Greek god Proteus, who could change his appearance at will - just like AI allows us to quickly change certain characteristics of a digital human. This means you can change their tone of voice, language, hairstyle, clothes, skin colour etc. on the fly, which has both positive and negative consequences. On one hand, it removes barriers to inclusion and allows identity expression and exploration. But on the other, it can result in the embodiment of different stereotypes and established beliefs. Pretty cool, huh?

5 risks that come with digital humans

Are you ready to meet the future of technology? Digital humans are here, and they're changing the game. But with any new technology, there are potential risks to consider. Here are 5 things you need to know about the potential risks of digital humans:

  • The uncanny valley: When interacting with a digital human, it can be a bit unsettling to realize it's not a real person. This can lead to a loss of trust.
  • User privacy: People tend to disclose more personal information when they think they're talking to a human-like person online. This means we need more regulations to protect our privacy.
  • Ethics: Creating digital humans can bring up stereotypes and false representations of society. We need to be mindful of these issues when selecting or designing digital humans for different use cases.
  • Human interactions: What happens when our digital identities are no longer tied to the physical world? We don't yet know how this will affect human interactions, which are the building blocks of our society.
  • Identity: With the ability to reinvent ourselves in digital worlds, trust and transparency can become a concern. It's important to consider the consequences of this newfound freedom.

The future of human interaction

Get ready for the future of human interaction!

The age of digital humans has arrived, and it's not going anywhere!

Get ready to explore new identities and forms of communication.

Businesses will be able to communicate faster than ever before, and society will enter a whole new era of social interaction.

Of course, there will be some bumps in the road, but we'll figure it out - just like we always do with new innovations.

One thing is for certain: we can't go back now! With technology ready and available, there's never been a better time to implement digital humans. Are you ready to join the revolution? Give Colossyan Creator a try and get into the new revolution of digital humans.

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