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Topic: Student Help - Thoughts on humanlike robots  (Read 716 times) previous topic - next topic

TessaWaldock

Dec 19, 2017, 05:35 pm Last Edit: Dec 19, 2017, 09:41 pm by TessaWaldock
Hello All,

I hope this is the right place to post a topic like this.

It'd be of great use for my dissertation if I could get some of your expert opinions on robots that are designed to look like humans. I have attached images of android robots that have been developed. I'd appreciate if you could let me know your opinions on the following:

What are your initial thoughts on their appearance, how do they make you feel?

Are these robots how you imagine a robot to look like, if no, how do you imagine robots to look?

Do you think designing the appearance of robots on real humans is a good thing?

Do you feel threatened by these robots in terms of their human appearance?

Do these type of robots scare you?

Any sort of discussion around this topic will be useful, so don't feel pressured into strictly answering the questions I have asked.

Thank you in advance!




PaulS

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Do you think designing the appearance of robots on real humans is a good thing?
No. Robots are machines. Making them look like humans adds a useless level of complexity to an already difficult process.

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Do you feel threatened by these robots in terms of their human appearance?
No. I know that I can walk up stairs, drinking tea, and talking on the phone, while using a cane. I know that none of the robots pictured will be able to do that in my lifetime.

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Do these type of robots scare you?
No, but that middle one sure is ugly.

The art of getting good answers lies in asking good questions.

Delta_G

Do any of the androids you pictured dream of electric sheep? 
|| | ||| | || | ||  ~Woodstock

PaulS

The art of getting good answers lies in asking good questions.

TessaWaldock

No. Robots are machines. Making them look like humans adds a useless level of complexity to an already difficult process.
No. I know that I can walk up stairs, drinking tea, and talking on the phone, while using a cane. I know that none of the robots pictured will be able to do that in my lifetime.
No, but that middle one sure is ugly.


Thanks for your reply PaulS :)

I agree it is very complex to make a robot be similar to a human. But, do you think there should be some sort of humanisation in the design of these robots? Perhaps, not fully human but have some similar features for humans to relate/connect to...

It'd also be useful to get your thoughts on how you think humans might react to this new technology? and what use you see these type of robots being used for in the real world, if any?

jremington

#5
Dec 24, 2017, 10:40 pm Last Edit: Dec 24, 2017, 10:42 pm by jremington
Scary thought: being relentlessly chased by "BigDog" by Boston Dynamics.

https://youtu.be/cNZPRsrwumQ

Humanoids don't have the mass, power or four legs and probably would not make that terrible buzzing noise.

PaulS

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But, do you think there should be some sort of humanisation in the design of these robots?
Personally, no. My CNC router does not look like a human, but is perfectly capable of cutting parts more accurately than a human. A machine should look like a machine.
The art of getting good answers lies in asking good questions.

CharlieCheeseCake

I understand your questions to be specifically regarding androids. 

I had always been quite critical of these realistic androids.   Having seen them in photos or videos they generally looked quite unappealing to me (irrespective of any technical prowess), and perhaps I found them a bit unnerving.  I tended to assume a salacious underlying motive of it's creator.  I was pretty dismissive what was being achieved.

THEN I had the chance to see Hiroshi Ishiguro's Kodomoroid    at the Science Museum in London England and it totally changed my perspective....

Facing a real android in operation I found myself able to suspend disbelief. Rather than looking critically at the motions, materials or motives - I was immediately and genuinely able to relate to a character.   Perhaps much like watching some movies: you know its sets, makeup, acting and CGI - but the over all result is a compelling emotional engagement.

I recall feeling sympathy for Kodomoroid being an exhibit, much like a creature in a zoo.  I was hesitant to record video (as I would be with a person).  I imagined with pity what it might be like at the end of the day when the lights are turned off and the museum is closed for the night for such an android.

There were several other humanoid robots in the exhibition. They were cool, but none had the same effect of this android. 

It was also interesting to watch children interacting with all types of robots.  Children seem not to need to distinguish.  My daughter had a lovely 'conversation' with Pepper - it struck me how engaged in the interaction she was.



So - I used to think Ishigurosan was a bit of nut-case, however I've revised my opinion based on my experience (albeit a limited experience) - and now I hold his work (and the efforts of others doing similar) in the highest esteem.
There is a lot of money being poured into robotics for two reasons: warfare and capitalism.  We want to build killing machines, and we want to produce work more efficiently.  Wheras androids to me represent the purest and most artistic application of robot technology. Androids are not going to take your job or kill anyone*

To respond to your specific queries:
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What are your initial thoughts on their appearance, how do they make you feel?
Before: Silly, Weird, Awkward, Cheap
Now: Great, Compelling, Engaging

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Are these robots how you imagine a robot to look like, if no, how do you imagine robots to look?
Robots look like robots (eg R2D2, or industrial robots), Humanoids look, well, like human shape, and Androids should look like humans.

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Do you think designing the appearance of robots on real humans is a good thing?
Yes, sure. Why not.  I certainly don't think its a bad thing.

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Do you feel threatened by these robots in terms of their human appearance?
No. They're generally designed not to behave or look threatening.

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Do these type of robots scare you?
No. It's going to be quite some time before an android can creep up on you.  Ask me again then.  :-)


[*Well, not for a while]

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