This category deals with different robotic technologies used in healthcare, ranging from smart hospitals to telemedicine, the heart-and-lung machine to the first robot that performed a heart surgery autonomously, and from care robots such as Paro to e-health applications. Research conducted in the context of palliative care indicates that patients would rather stay at home as long as they can rather than go to the hospital. The smart home is one solution to support and give medical care at home. Briefly, the smart home is a network-connected and computationally controlled home. In the near future, robotics will be able to automate many of the home’s control features, from changing the temperature of the house to monitoring the vital status of the residents. This category discusses the different approaches, technologies and innovations related to smart homes from the end of life perspective. These include robots in assisted living, ambient assisted living and also the domestication of robotic technologies.

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Why robot nannies probably won’t do much psychological damage

While the issue of robot child care is obviously of critical importance, an appraisal will not benefit either the field or society if it unrealistically exaggerates a threat, any more so than if it unrealistically trivialises danger. Thus while I largely concur with Sharkey and Sharkey (hereafter S&S) on many substantial and important points, I…

Robots in the Home: What Will We Have Agreed To?

This essay begins by identifying the legally salient features of home robots: the aspects of home robots that will likely drive the most interesting legal questions. It then explores how current privacy law governing both law enforcement and private parties addresses a number of questions raised by home robots. First, how does privacy law treat…

Blackwood Gallery | Care, Automated

The habit of attaching “care” to innately positive attributes obscures its entanglement with dominant systems of power and control. The ambivalence of care is crisply reflected in technological configurations of care/work. In this workshop, seven researchers share their inquiries into intersections of care and technology, in particular, automation. Questioning technological fixes to care crisis, Care,…

Social Robots: Human-Machine Configurations – Transformations Journal No. 29, 2017

Human-machine relationships are being transformed by robots increasingly performing social roles such as teachers, carers and companions. This arrival of social robots is challenging understandings of human-machine relationships and generating diverse aesthetic, ethical and political debates. Matters of interest include asymmetries in human-robot relationships, the co-constitution of humans and robots, the place of robot labour,…

Perception, Imagination and Affect in Human–Robot Relationships

As they arrive in our homes, nursing facilities and educational institutions, urgent questions are being asked about the ethics of encouraging people to have feelings towards social robots that have roles as companions, carers and teachers. This article suggests that the quality of these debates is enhanced by examining how people perceive robots and, in…

Social geographies II Robots

This report examines how social geographers are engaging with the questions that robots and robotic technologies provoke. First, it discusses Marxist analyses of machines and troubles the role that robots play in social production and reproduction. Second, robots as actors in assemblages of sociospatial relations are interrogated for their role in state violence. Third, the…

How Medical Robots are going to Affect Our Lives

As we look at the fundamental manner in which emerging technologies are altering human life, a natural trend to talk about is how Medical Robots are bringing about the biggest paradigm shift in ways in which human beings are treated and human lives are saved. Medical Robots help surgeons perform surgeries with maximum precision, minimal…

Interaction Expands Function: Social Shaping of the Therapeutic Robot PARO in a Nursing Home

We use the social shaping of technology and society framework to qualitatively analyze data collected through observation of human-robot interaction (HRI) between social actors in a nursing home (staff, residents, visitors) and the socially assistive robot PARO. The study took place over the course of three months, during which PARO was placed in a publicly…

Use of a Therapeutic, Socially Assistive Pet Robot (PARO) in Improving Mood and Stimulating Social Interaction and Communication for People With Dementia: Study Protocol for a Randomized Controlled Trial

Background Socially assistive robotics is a growing area for geriatric research. Objective This single-blind, randomized controlled trial (RCT) aims to investigate the use of PARO, a therapeutic, socially assistive pet robot, in improving mood, and stimulating social interaction and communication for people with dementia in the community. Results Recruitment to the pilot study began in…

Development and preliminary evaluation of a caregiver’s manual for robot therapy using the therapeutic seal robot Paro

Robot therapy is expected to have psychological, physiological and social effects similar to animal therapy. The use of a therapeutic seal robot, Paro, in various facilities for the elderly is spreading around the world. However, caregivers use Paro freely, and the ways in which they use Paro differ among them. Therefore, the effects are influenced…

Interaction Expands Function: Social Shaping of the Therapeutic Robot PARO in a Nursing Home

We use the social shaping of technology and society framework to qualitatively analyze data collected through observation of human-robot interaction (HRI) between social actors in a nursing home (staff, residents, visitors) and the socially assistive robot PARO. The study took place over the course of three months, during which PARO was placed in a publicly…

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