Dogs’ behavior could help design social robots

Dogs’ behavior could help design social robots

Designers of social robots, take note. Bring your dog to the lab next time you test a prototype, and watch how your pet interacts with it. You might just learn a thing or two that could help you fine-tune future designs. So says researchers who found that ‘man’s best friend’ reacts sociably to robots that behave socially towards them, even if the devices look nothing like a human.

via ScienceDaily: Top Science News:

Sep. 12, 2013 — Designers of social robots, take note. Bring your dog to the lab next time you test a prototype, and watch how your pet interacts with it. You might just learn a thing or two that could help you fine-tune future designs. So says Gabriella Lakatos of the Hungarian Academy of Science and Eötvös Loránd University, lead author of a study¹ published in Springer’s journal Animal Cognition that found that man’s best friend reacts sociably to robots that behave socially towards them, even if the devices look nothing like a human.This animal behavior study tested the reaction of 41 dogs. They were divided into two groups depending on the nature of human-robot interaction: ‘asocial’ or ‘social.’One set of dogs in the ‘asocial group’ first observed an interaction between two humans (the owner and the human experimenter) and then observed an ‘asocial’ interaction between the owner and the robot. The remaining dogs in this group participated in these interactions in the reverse order.Then, in the ‘social group,’ one set of dogs watched an interaction between the owner and the human experimenter followed by observing a ‘social’ interaction between the owner and the robot. The remaining dogs in this group also participated in these interactions in the reverse order. These interactions were followed by sessions in which either the human experimenter or the robot pointed out the location of hidden food in both the ‘asocial’ and the ‘social’ groups.A customized human-sized PeopleBot² with two arms and four-fingered hands were used. One of its robotic arms makes simple gestures and grasps objects. …

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ScienceDaily: Top Science News

Dogs’ behavior could help design social robots

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