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…

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…

Alone Together: Why We Expect More from Technology and Less from Each Other

Consider Facebookits human contact, only easier to engage with and easier to avoid. Developing technology promises closeness. Sometimes it delivers, but much of our modern life leaves us less connected with people and more connected to simulations of them. In Alone Together, MIT technology and society professor Sherry Turkle explores the power of our new…

On participatory design of home-based healthcare

Participatory design (PD) activities in private homes challenge how we relate to the PD process, compared to PD in professional settings. Grounded in a project related to chronic dizziness among older people, we identified four challenges when performing PD with ill, weak users in their private homes. The challenges are (1) designing for, and negotiating…

A Prospective Framework for the Design of Ideal Artificial Moral Agents: Insights from the Science of Heroism in Humans

The growing field of machine morality has becoming increasingly concerned with how to develop artificial moral agents. However, there is little consensus on what constitutes an ideal moral agent let alone an artificial one. Leveraging a recent account of heroism in humans, the aim of this paper is to provide a prospective framework for conceptualizing,…

A cross-cultural study of acceptance and use of robotics by future psychology practitioners

Research in robotics has made available numerous possibilities and tools for further innovation in psychological practice. For instance, recent research provided many examples of possible applications of robots in the education and rehabilitation of people with learning difficulties and/or intellectual disabilities. In this paper, we present a study on how cultural backgrounds can influence the…