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Zombies and the uncanny divide
Michael considered fate at 19:24   |   Permalink   |   Post a Comment

So what you're saying is, most of your ex-girlfriends had "uncanny valleys"? whoa. 


Uncanny \Un*can"ny\, a.
unsafe; strange; weird; ghostly. 
From TRUE, via the always-so-readable The Known Universe blog comes an eassy on Zombies and Robots and the uncanny divide:
"Mori's hypothesis states that as a robot is made more humanlike in its appearance and motion, the emotional response from a human being to the robot will become increasingly positive and empathic, until a point is reached beyond which the response quickly becomes that of strong repulsion. However, as the appearance and motion continue to become less distinguishable from a human being, the emotional response becomes positive once more and approaches human-to-human empathy levels."

This area of repulsive response aroused by a robot with appearance and motion between a "barely-human" and "fully human" entity is called the uncanny valley. The name captures the idea that a robot which is "almost human" will seem overly "strange" to a human being and thus will fail to evoke the empathetic response required for productive human-robot interaction.
I think that explains a lot of my ex girlfriends, actually.

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Check out heroecs, the robotics team competition website of my old supervisor's daughter. Fun stuff!
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