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Walking in the uncanny valley: importance of the attractiveness on the acceptance of a robot as a working partner

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posted on 21.05.2015 by Matthieu Destephe, Martim Brandao, Tatsuhiro Kishi, Massimiliano Zecca, Kenji Hashimoto, Atsuo Takanishi
The Uncanny valley hypothesis, which tells us that almost-human characteristics in a robot or a device could cause uneasiness in human observers, is an important research theme in the Human Robot Interaction (HRI) field. Yet, that phenomenon is still not well-understood. Many have investigated the external design of humanoid robot faces and bodies but only a few studies have focused on the influence of robot movements on our perception and feelings of the Uncanny valley. Moreover, no research has investigated the possible relation between our uneasiness feeling and whether or not we would accept robots having a job in an office, a hospital or elsewhere. To better understand the Uncanny valley, we explore several factors which might have an influence on our perception of robots, be it related to the subjects, such as culture or attitude toward robots, or related to the robot such as emotions and emotional intensity displayed in its motion. We asked 69 subjects (N = 69) to rate the motions of a humanoid robot (Perceived Humanity, Eeriness, and Attractiveness) and state where they would rather see the robot performing a task. Our results suggest that, among the factors we chose to test, the attitude toward robots is the main influence on the perception of the robot related to the Uncanny valley. Robot occupation acceptability was affected only by Attractiveness, mitigating any Uncanny valley effect. We discuss the implications of these findings for the Uncanny valley and the acceptability of a robotic worker in our society.

Funding

This study was conducted as part of the Research Institute for Science and Engineering, Waseda University, and as part of the humanoid project at the Humanoid Robotics Institute, Waseda University. It was supported in part by JSPS KAKENHI (#26540137 and#26870639)and by Waseda Special Research Funds (#2013A-888).It was also partially supported by Solid Works Japan K.K and DYDEN Corporation whom we thank for their financial and technical support.

History

School

  • Mechanical, Electrical and Manufacturing Engineering

Published in

FRONTIERS IN PSYCHOLOGY

Volume

6

Pages

? - ? (11)

Citation

DESTEPHE, M. ... et al, 2015. Walking in the uncanny valley: importance of the attractiveness on the acceptance of a robot as a working partner. Frontiers in Psychology, 6, 204.

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Frontiers / © The Authors

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VoR (Version of Record)

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This work is made available according to the conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported (CC BY 3.0) licence. Full details of this licence are available at: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/

Publication date

2015

Notes

This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) or licensor are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

ISSN

1664-1078

Language

en

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