The double-edged sword of making robots more human

Cosmos Magazine


Cosmos is a quarterly science magazine. We aim to inspire curiosity in ‘The Science of Everything’ and make the world of science accessible to everyone.

By Cosmos

A robot at a chess tournament in Russia broke a young boy’s finger earlier this year.

The incident has triggered online debate with swarms of commenters humanising the robot, some saying it had motive and was out to get the boy for cheating.

It also reignited a conversation about the lengths to which we, as humans, breathe life into machines.

So is there a problem with how we perceive our artificial assistants, or with trying to make them more human?

Read more: Domo arigato, Mr. Roboto: Gendering robots is a cognitive shortcut that can lead to short circuits

In this episode of The Science Briefing, Sophie Calabretto talks to Cosmos Magazine journalist Petra Stock about how we perceive robots and the double-edged sword of making them more human.

The Science Briefing is a LiSTNR production.

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