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Developing robots that can teach humans -- Science Nation

Developing robots that can teach humans

When it comes to communication, sometimes it's our body language that says the most--especially our eyes. "It turns out that gaze tells us all sorts of things about attention, about mental states, about roles in conversations," says Bilge Mutlu, a computer scientist at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Mutlu knows a thing or two about the psychology of body language. He bills himself as a human-computer interaction specialist. Mutlu and his fellow computer scientist, Michael Gleicher, take gaze behavior in humans and create algorithms to reproduce it in robots and animated characters. Both Mutlu and Gleicher are betting that there will be significant benefits to making robots and animated characters "look" more like humans. "We can build animated agents and robots that can communicate more effectively by using the very subtle cues that people use," says Gleicher.

Credit: National Science Foundation

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