09 April 2008

Real live robots

Some time ago, I wrote:
Just like cloning mammals arrived sooner than most people expected and left people scrambling for how to deal with the situation, I'm starting to think that we'd better start doing some serious thought about the legal ramifications of robotics.
I'm thinking much the same thoughts after reading this story and accompanying video.

To me, it's no surprise that people will respond emotionally to robots, because people tend to treat everything as alive. Watch the amount of attention people give to their cars sometime. I can't remember if I blogged about it, but I saw some time ago an interview with a researcher who found that the further people were from their computers, the more likely they were to use profanity in describing it -- that is, they were being polite to the computer.

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