Built by ATR and Kokoro in Japan, Geminoid-DK is the first model of Geminoid to be hosted outside of Japan. It will be used at Aalborg University by Sharfe and his colleagues to explore human-robot interaction. According to their website, the university’s Centre for Robotics Research will aim to answer the following broad philosophical questions: What is a human? What is presence? What is a relation? What is identity? I’m clueless as to the details of the experiments the team hopes to run, but I can guess that Geminoid-DK will be spending quite a bit of time meeting and communicating with visiting humans to judge their reactions.
Another part of what Sharfe’s team hopes to explore is the effect of ‘Blended Presence’. I take that to mean that they will attempt to understand how we treat each other differently when we see each other both in person and remotely through a robot that resembles us. I love this quote from Sharfe:
“Interestingly, we seem to attribute identity to one of the two: the person or the robot. If someone looked at a picture with you in it (for some reason maybe not very clear) and asked: Is that you? You would probably answer: Yeah, thats me.”