Prominent robot ethics questions focus on liability and privacy concerns in the face of increasingly autonomous technology. A lesser-discussed issue is the emergence and effect of robots that are designed to interact with humans on a social level. Studies have begun to establish a tendency to perceive social robots differently than we do other objects. As more and more robotic companions enter into our lives and homes, our inclination to project life-like qualities onto robots could have some societal implications.
Kate Darling — IP Research Specialist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Media Lab and a Ph.D. candidate in Intellectual Property and Law & Economics at the ETH Zurich — discusses some of the more interesting developments in the world of robot/human interaction, and where we might find ourselves in the coming decades.
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