Latest Robotic Innovation: DARPA Teaches Robots Manners

Innovation:  Polite Robots Facilitating More Seamless Human Interaction  By Maryanne Kane

DARPA, the U.S. Department of Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, has an innovation research project underway to teach robots manners.  They have created a machine algorithm that allows robots to “intuit” how to behave like polite humans in specific circumstances.  For example, the robots say thank you when someone has given them a helping hand.  They intuitively know to turn off a ringing cellphone in a library.  In some cases, their behavior may be more polite than some humans.  It’s robotic innovation on the cutting edge.

DARPA Breakthrough Innovation Robotics Research

DARPA has long been the innovation leader in the development of disruptive innovation robotics.  Their focus is the creation of robotic technology to provide the US military with overwhelming technological advantages on the battlefield.  DARPA research teams ,as detailed in our podcast with DARPA’s Director, have developed in conjunction with Boston Dynamics the Wild Cat, which is the world’s fastest quadruped robot.  It’s predecessor is the Cheetah, which was the world’s fastest running robot.  Another DARPA funded breakthrough robot is Big Dog, the world’s first advanced rough terrain robot.  The LS3 is the highly advanced next generation model of Big Dog.

Teaching Robots Civility and Ethics –  Innovation

DARPA envisions a view of the future where robots play a critical and integral role with humans.  Researchers believe that in order to capitalize on a future of driverless cars, virtual digital assistants and future robots, the robots are going to have to adhere to the same social and ethical  norms as humans do.    DARPA has studied how humans recognize and abide by social norms.  Researchers have developed a machine learning algorithm that enables robots to learn these manners by drawing on human data.

Artificial Intelligence(ai) System to Humanize Robots – Innovation in Robotics

DARPA’s focus is to develop an artificial intelligence system (AI) that will empower robots to act and behave correctly in specific situations.  For example, remaining quiet in a library, classroom or church.  Thus far, DARPA has succeeded in providing a framework for this highly advanced type of machine learning   Going forward, robots would have to be programmed with the capacity to learn, represent, activate and apply the many norms that humans expect others to obey. believes this is a vision of the future, being extensively researched and developed by DARPA, where robots could play an exponentially expanding role in human life for the better.  It’s innovation and disruptive innovation on the cutting edge.

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