Future applications of robotic technologies will
involve interactions with non-expert humans as machines
will assume the role of companions, teachers or healthcare
assistants. In all those tasks social behavior is a key ability
that needs to be systematically investigated and modelled
at the lowest level, as even a minor inconsistency of the
robot’s behavior can greatly affect the way humans will
perceive it and react to it. Here we propose an integrated
architecture for generating a socially competent robot.We
validate our architecture using a humanoid robot, demonstrating
that gaze, eye contact and utilitarian emotions
play an essential role in the psychological validity or social
salience of Human-Robot Interaction (HRI). We show
that this social salience affects both the empathic bonding
between the human and a humanoid robot and, to a
certain extent, the attribution of a Theory of Mind (ToM).
More specifically, we investigate whether these social cues
affect other utilitarian aspects of the interaction such as
knowledge transfer within a teaching context.
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Paladyn. Journal of Behavioral Robotics is a new, peer-reviewed, electronic-only journal that publishes original, high-quality research on topics broadly related to neuronally and psychologically inspired robots and other behaving autonomous systems.