28 Apr '12, 1pm

Study Shows That Humans Attribute Moral Accountability to Robots

"I'm sorry, but I never make mistakes like that," says the robot, informing you that you've lost the game and won't get the prize. How would you react if you knew the robot was actually wrong? The Human Interaction With Nature and Technological Systems (HINTS) Lab at the University of Washington, in Seattle, recently published two large studies exploring whether humans view robots as moral entities, conceptualizing them as possessing things like emotional and social attributes to them as opposed to thinking of them simply as sophisticated tools. Here's what they've found. The research team, led by Peter Kahn, points out that the morality (or perceived morality) of robots is going to get more and more relevant as they become cooks and maids and drivers and soldiers and friends and otherwise integrate themselves more tightly into our lives. With this in mind, it's more impor...

Full article: http://spectrum.ieee.org/automaton/robotics/artificial-in...

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