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Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Warning Signals about the "Robotic Moment"

Sherry Turkle, the Director of MIT’s Initiative on Technology and Self, has become deeply pessimistic about our digital future. In her controversial new book, Alone Together, Turkle argues that the development of emotionally sympathetic robots like Tamagotchis and Furbies means that the “robotic moment” has arrived for the human race.
Over the last 15 years Turkle has studied the human robot relation with a broad cross section of children, adults and old people. She found out that, people turned to robots as a substitute for human interaction, caused by a sense of disappointment with each other. Robots are used by lonely, isolated human beings as lovers, best friends and caregivers. She is worried about interaction that makes humans feel that robots care, when they only emulate emotions. She is worried about the idea to use of social robots for child and elderly care, that could undermine human relations and dehumanize our welfare system.
See video interview at TechCrunch.

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