The HP Chromebook 11. Picture: AP Photo/Mark Lennihan

London - Functional and reliable, computers are modern man’s best friend.

And soon they will become even friendlier, as scientists want them to be able to make us laugh.

An academic is studying text messages in the aim of making computers funnier.

Hannu Toivonen from the University of Helsinki asked 90 volunteers to rate the wit of 300 texts that had been altered as if generated using predictive text – the system that finishes off a person’s words as they type a message.

Although it speeds up messaging, it can lead to amusing mistakes. For instance, “You are my knight in shining armour” might be auto-corrected to “You are my might in shining armpit”.

The researchers hope the study will help computer programmers make our computers and tablets more humorous and send us wittier messages for such functions as automated reminders. - Daily Mail