Software Models

At this stage I want to improve the software so that the robot has a greater variety of dynamic behaviours. I’ve described the old software previously, but just to recap there was only one behaviour, trying to get close to the person. It worked by each module assessing whether it had the ability to increase contact the number of modules that made skin contact and if so then the module would turn until contact was made. That required each module to speak to neighbours, and the model for this is represented in the following diagram:

Taking that decentralized model as a starting point, the robot will now try different behaviours depending on stimulus. It’s speed, force, attraction, and persistence will all be affected by stimulus, and may result in various affects such as soft snuggling, or hard repulsion, or other things in between. In trying to figure out how to model the various possibilities, the only style I could think of was a Decision Tree borrowed from Game Theory. It seems to do the trick, but I wonder if this is really the best way to approach this. Seems to work anyway…

ADB v.2 Decision Tree

See the first node marked Robot Trust? That is a persistence factor. If the bulk of the interaction has been unsafe, as measured by User Valence (the hardness of their touch), and by the speed of the interaction, then the robot will attempt to look after itself more, and be less inclined to pay attention to the user, whereas if the user is slow and gentle in their handling then over time the robot may become more playful, experimental, and reciprocal in its interaction. Again the important thing is that the idea of trust is rooted in instrumental utility rather than in anthropomorphic imitation. Trust seems to be the only quality that needs explaining, speed, valence (which is really the hardness of touch), and attraction (trying to make contact) are all intimately tied to mechanisms.



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3 responses to “Software Models

  1. Pingback: Olafur Eliasson and Diagrams « Machines for Social Circumstances

  2. collective

    can’t see sht, cause the img is way too small

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