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Chats with robots ‘not far off’

Belfast telegraph [1]
Saturday, September 15, 2012

Robots and computers could soon be having meaningful conversations and even arguments with humans.

A new research project will develop systems that allow men and machines to debate decisions. It opens up the possibility of human operators discussing action plans with robots and, if necessary, ordering them to break rules.

For their part, the computers would be able to argue in favour of decisions or inform their operators that certain tasks are impossible. Early versions of the software could be available in just three years. Lead researcher Dr Wamberto Vasconcelos, from the University of Aberdeen, said the aim is to increase human trust in intelligent technology.

“Autonomous systems such as robots are an integral part of modern industry, used to carry out tasks without continuous human guidance,” he said. “Employed across a variety of sectors, these systems can quickly process huge amounts of information when deciding how to act. However, in doing so, they can make mistakes which are not obvious to them or to a human.

Full story here. [1]