Learning from Humanoid AI

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In 2018, Dr. Yuefang Zhou and Prof. Dr. Martin Fischer initiated the first international workshop on intimate human-robot relations at the University of Potsdam, „which resulted in the publication of an edited book on developments in human-robot intimate relationships“. This year, Prof. Dr. Martin Fischer, Prof. Dr. Rebecca Lazarides, and Dr. Yuefang Zhou are organizing […]

The Next Robophilosophy Conference

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„Once we place so-called ’social robots‘ into the social practices of our everyday lives and lifeworlds, we create complex, and possibly irreversible, interventions in the physical and semantic spaces of human culture and sociality. The long-term socio-cultural consequences of these interventions is currently impossible to gauge.“ (Website Robophilosophy Conference) With these words the next Robophilosophy […]

CONVERSATIONS 2019 in Amsterdam

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CONVERSATIONS 2019 is a full-day workshop on chatbot research. It will take place on November 19, 2019 at the University of Amsterdam. From the description: „Chatbots are conversational agents which allow the user access to information and services though natural language dialogue, through text or voice. … Research is crucial in helping realize the potential […]

New Platform about Robophilosophy

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Robophilosophy or robot philosophy is a field of philosophy that deals with robots (hardware and software robots) as well as with enhancement options such as artificial intelligence. It is not only about the practice and history of development, but also the history of ideas, starting with the works of Homer and Ovid up to science […]

Deceptive Machines

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„AI has definitively beaten humans at another of our favorite games. A poker bot, designed by researchers from Facebook’s AI lab and Carnegie Mellon University, has bested some of the world’s top players …“ (The Verge, 11 July 2019) According to the magazine, Pluribus was remarkably good at bluffing its opponents. The Wall Street Journal […]

Papers of Workshop „Conversational Agents“

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The papers of the CHI 2019 workshop „Conversational Agents: Acting on the Wave of Research and Development“ (Glasgow, 5 May 2019) are now listed on convagents.org. The extended abstract by Oliver Bendel (School of Business FHNW) entitled „Chatbots as Moral and Immoral Machines“ can be downloaded here. The workshop brought together experts from all over […]

A Solution to the Nursing Crisis?

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„In Germany, around four million people will be dependent on care and nursing in 2030. Already today there is talk of a nursing crisis, which is likely to intensify further in view of demographic developments in the coming years. Fewer and fewer young people will be available to the labour market as potential carers for […]

Developing Ethics for Eldercare Robots

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Prof. Dr. Susan L. Anderson, one of the most famous machine ethicists in the world, attended the 23rd Berlin Colloquium. She summarized her talk („Developing Ethics for Eldercare Robots“) in the brochure of the event with regard to the technology of care robots as follows: „Ideally, we would like eldercare robots to be able make […]

An Ethical Care Robot

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Prof. Dr. Michael Anderson, one of the most famous machine ethicists in the world, attended the 23rd Berlin Colloquium. He summarized his presentation („An Ethical Care Robot“) in the brochure of the event with regard to the technology of care robots as follows: As with any technology, „its advantages need to be tempered with its […]

Eine Sternstunde der Maschinenethik

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Am 22. Mai 2019 fand das 23. Berliner Kolloquium der Daimler und Benz Stiftung statt. Es widmete sich Pflegerobotern, nicht nur aus den bekannten, sondern auch aus neuartigen Perspektiven. So hatte der wissenschaftliche Leiter, Prof. Dr. Oliver Bendel, zwei der bekanntesten Maschinenethiker der Welt eingeladen, Prof. Dr. Michael Anderson und Prof. Dr. Susan L. Anderson. […]

Chatbots in Glasgow

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„In the last five years, work on software that interacts with people via typed or spoken natural language, called chatbots, intelligent assistants, social bots, virtual companions, non-human players, and so on, increased dramatically. Chatbots burst into prominence in 2016. Then came a wave of research, more development, and some use. The time is right to […]

The Moral Twin

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Machine ethics produces moral and immoral machines. The morality is usually fixed, e.g. by programmed meta-rules and rules. The machine is thus capable of certain actions, not others. However, another approach is the morality menu (MOME for short). With this, the owner or user transfers his or her own morality onto the machine. The machine […]

About Service Robots

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Service robots are becoming ever more pervasive in society-at-large. They are present in our apartments and our streets. They are found in hotels, hospitals, and care homes, in shopping malls, and on company grounds. In doing so, various challenges arise. Service robots consume energy, they take up space in ever more crowded cities, sometimes leading […]

CONVERSATIONS 2018

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CONVERSATIONS 2018 was a cross-disciplinary workshop to advance chatbot research. It took place on 26 October in St. Petersburg, at the School of Journalism and Mass Communications. „Chatbots enable users to interact with digital services in natural language, through text or voice dialogue. Customer service and digital assistants are applications areas where chatbots already have […]

Will Smart Machines be Kind to Animals?

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„With a few decades, autonomous and semi-autonomous machines will be found throughout Earth’s environments, from homes and gardens to parks and farms and so-called working landscapes – everywhere, really, that humans are found, and perhaps even places we’re not. And while much attention is given to how those machines will interact with people, far less […]

Animals and Machines

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Semi-autonomous machines, autonomous machines and robots inhabit closed, semi-closed and open environments. There they encounter domestic animals, farm animals, working animals and/or wild animals. These animals could be disturbed, displaced, injured or killed. Within the context of machine ethics, the School of Business FHNW developed several design studies and prototypes for animal-friendly machines, which can […]

Successful Completion of the BESTBOT Project

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The BESTBOT was developed at the School of Business FHNW from March to August 2018. Predecessor projects were GOODBOT (2013) and LIEBOT (2016). Prof. Dr. Oliver Bendel has been doing research in the young discipline of machine ethics for several years. In cooperation with robotics and artificial intelligence (AI), it designs and produces moral machines. At the […]

A Moral Menu for a Domestic Robot

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LADYBIRD, the animal-friendly vacuum cleaning robot, was conceived in 2014 by Oliver Bendel and introduced at Stanford University (AAAI Spring Symposia) in 2017 and then implemented as a prototype at the School of Business FHNW. In the context of the project, a menu was proposed with which the user can set the morale of the vacuum cleaner […]

Understanding AI & Us

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The international workshop „Understanding AI & Us“ will take place in Berlin (Alexander von Humboldt Institute for Internet and Society) on 30 June 2018. It is hosted by Joanna Bryson (MIT), Janina Loh (University of Vienna), Stefan Ullrich (Weizenbaum Institute Berlin) and Christian Djeffal (IoT and Government, Berlin). Birgit Beck, Oliver Bendel and Pak-Hang Wong […]

Sex Robots are Coming

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„Sex robots are coming, but the argument that they could bring health benefits, including offering paedophiles a ’safe‘ outlet for their sexual desires, is not based on evidence, say researchers. The market for anthropomorphic dolls with a range of orifices for sexual pleasure – the majority of which are female in form, and often boast […]