Simone C. Niquille, Homeschool, 2020

Colloquium: "Social Robots"

Dangerous machines or friendly companions? One thing is clear: our fascination with robots persists. This colloquium in cooperation with TA-SWISS will continue to pursue it.


Wed, 21.10.2020, 18:30

lieu: HeK

Entrée: free admission

Inscription: required

Due to COVID-19 regulations, this event is limited to 50 attendances. Please register via the "Register" button, write an e-mail to office[at]hek.ch or call us: +41 61 283 60 50

In science fiction films they are presented both as dangerous machines threatening human survival and as friendly companions in our everyday lives. Human-like or animal-like robots, such as the seal Paro, are used in health care, sex robots compensate for the deficits of human relationships, intelligent devices listen to our conversations and take care of our needs - it seems we communicate more with technology than with other humans. Thanks to artificial intelligence, they can also analyse our moods and emotions and react accordingly. The use of "social robots" and their supposed empathy raises many sociological, psychological, economic, philosophical and legal questions. 

This event is part of a current study by TA-SWISS which deals with the potentials and risks of social robots that simulate empathy and trigger emotions. The focus is on the new challenges in the relationship between man and machine. At the colloquium, the two scientists Prof. Dr. Oliver Bendel and Prof. Dr. Hartmut Schulze and the Swiss artist Simone C. Niquille will provide brief inputs on the topic and discuss the questions raised in a panel discussion. The audience is of course invited to join in the discussion. The event will be moderated by Roland Fischer, science journalist. Elisabeth Ehrensperger, Managing Director TA-SWISS, and Sabine Himmelsbach, Director HeK, will introduce the evening.

Prof. Dr. Oliver Bendel (University of Applied Sciences FHNW) will give a lecture on the topic of machine ethics. He is an expert in the fields of e-learning, knowledge management, social media, mobile business, avatars and agents, information ethics and machine ethics. Since the beginning of the new millennium, information ethics, machine ethics and robotics have become his most important disciplines. Essays such as "Care Robots with Sexual Assistance Functions", "Co-Robots as Care Robots" or the article "Hologram Girl" in the book "AI Love You: Developments on human-robot intimate relationships" are located in these areas.

Prof. Dr. Hartmut Schulze (University of Applied Psychology FHNW) will present the TA-SWISS study "Robots, Empathy and Emotions", which was launched in July 2019 and whose results are expected to be available in spring 2021. He is head of the Institute for Cooperation Research and Development and conducts research in areas such as the design of human-robot interaction and the promotion of its acceptance.

The Swiss artist Simone C. Niquille, who is represented in the exhibition Real Feelings, will present her project Homeschool: Robots as Roommates. The advent of autonomous household appliances raises a number of questions about domestic privacy and the architectural design of private spaces. For autonomous navigation and recognition of objects and spaces, these future mechanical roommates will be equipped with artificial intelligence. The Homeschool project shows the training material used to develop AI and investigates this in terms of shaping our domestic future.

Admission is free. Please register via the "Register" button.

The event is held in German and broadcasted via Instagram live stream @hek_basel. The colloquium is also recorded and made available later on on Vimeo.

Colloquium: "Social Robots"


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