Sophia is a humanoid robot in the shape of a woman (a quinoid), developed by Hong Kong company Hanson Robotics in 2015. The robot was designed to learn and adapt to human behavior, as well as work with humans.

The developers used speech recognition technology from Google’s parent company, Alphabet. The robot has artificial intelligence with visual processing functions. Software for it was developed by SingularityNET, which integrated artificial intelligence and blockchain technology. It analyzes conversations conducted and improves responses in the future based on new data.

October 25, 2017 at the summit "Investment Initiative of the Future" in Riyadh, the robot was granted citizenship of Saudi Arabia and, thus, Sofia became the first robot who ever had citizenship, while receiving legal status.

This event provoked controversy about whether Sofia possesses real civil rights or her citizenship only a bright PR action. Saudi Arabia is a country in which women are denied civil rights, while a robot that uniquely identifies itself as a woman acquires citizenship. However, what opportunities the citizenship of Saudi Arabia will give the robot, representatives of the kingdom do not report.

After this statement on citizenship in Tokyo, a chat bot named Mirai, working on the basis of artificial intelligence, was granted the status of an official resident in a special district of Shibuya. Also in 2017, the European Parliament introduced a bill on the provision of the legal status of “electronic persons” for robots. The author of the initiative, Madi Delvo, believes that in the conditions of the current technological progress, it is necessary to establish in advance the basic ethical norms regarding artificial intelligence in order to avoid problems in the future.

The request for the personification and anthropomorphization of robots is not unfounded and is becoming more and more obvious. Who will be responsible for the actions of the robot? Who will pay damages for damage caused by such autonomous mechanisms? By granting legal status to robots, a serious step is being made towards the recognition of autonomous machines.

So, back in 2006, Germany was one of the first in the world to embark on a broad program of robotization and informatization of industry. Gradually, this issue becomes one of the main issues in the strategic agenda of the entire European Union. In 2013, the EU authorities are creating a public-private partnership SPARC - a project entirely dedicated to the financing and development of robotics.

In February 2017, the European Parliament adopts a resolution “Civil Law Standards on Robotics”. The document, consisting of more than hundreds of points, is devoted to a variety of aspects and problems of robotics and artificial intelligence. Thus, the introduction of a European system of registration of smart machines is proposed. The parliamentarians want to assign an individual registration number, which will be entered in a special register in which everyone will be able to find detailed information about the robot, including information on the manufacturer, owner and conditions for paying compensation in the event of harm.

The system will be maintained and controlled by a specialized agency for robotics and artificial intelligence. Compulsory insurance of risks associated with the actions of robots, will allow the victim to receive a guaranteed compensation, and in cases that are not covered by insurance, a reserve compensation fund may be used. As an annex to the resolution, a “code of ethics” was submitted, which robotics developers are suggested to use voluntarily.

The code was based on the laws of robotics, formulated by Isaac Asimov back in 1942. One of the points of the document is the “right to undo” - the possibility of cancellation of the action, which should become an obligatory function of the robot's control system. In addition, the framework for the future comprehensive “Robotics Charter” was set.

The adopted resolution is not a Law, as the European Commission, not the European Parliament, has the right of legislative initiative. Therefore, the resolution of the European Parliament should be considered as a formal appeal for the adoption of specific measures. It is not known whether the adopted resolution will be a full-fledged European Union Law, but there is no doubt that sooner or later a clear law will be adopted that regulates robotics.