How about having a conversation with your pet? Seems quite impossible, right? Not anymore. According to leading experts, in just ten years, your pet dog or cat will be able to talk to you.
With the help of artificial intelligence, this childhood dream of becoming someone like Dr Dolittle will finally come true.
Professor Con Slobodchikoff from Northern Arizona University, who has been studying the animals for more than 30 years, is trying to develop a new technology that interprets the calls of the prairie dog and it could eventually be used to interpret the calls of other animals as well.
"I thought, if we can do this with prairie dogs, we can certainly do it with dogs and cats," Slobodchikoff, told NBC news.
Slobodchikoff believes that extensive filming with dogs could help in understanding the true behaviour of the animals and it will help them translate their thoughts like 'I want to eat now' or 'I want to go for a walk'.
The work is at an early stage and Slobodchikoff is currently collecting thousands of videos of dogs barking, growling and moving around, and using them to teach an AI algorithm about these canine communication signals.
He also said that this technology could be fine-tuned so that humans could also talk back to animals and engage in proper conversation.
He predicts that once people start talking to animals, they'll realise they are also living, breathing, thinking and that they have much to contribute to people's lives.
The pet translator is expected to be out on the market within 10 years, according to an Amazon-sponsored report on future trends released last summer.
And also, back in 2013, Slobodchikoff suggested that this technology would be available within ten years after extensive research.
Researchers have already succeeded last year, in understanding whether a sheep was happy or sad with the use of artificial intelligence.