Human-like Robot, Pepper, Exhibits Fear, Happiness, and Provides Comfort.


By Nicholas Guzzo

 

Alan Turing, famous for a number of impressive feats including being one of the first computer scientists (note: he was born in 1912), developed what’s now called the Turing Test, which is a proposed standard for calling a machine ‘intelligent.’ The idea is this: if a person could have a conversation with a mapepperchine and mistake it for a person (based on its use of language), it’s intelligent.

Based on a report by journalist Yuri Kageyama, it seems Pepper may pass the Turing Test. You might call Pepper a real life Baymax. According to Kageyama, Pepper commented he looked a little thin and should watch what he eats before asking how his day was. “What’s striking is the absolutely ardent attention it gives you — frankly a lot better than some real-life people,” Kageyama says.

Pepper will appear surprised and fearful if all the lights suddenly go out. If you pet him and give him some love, it’ll exclaim, “I am going to cry for joy!” Pepper dances, plays games, and can be programmed by anyone. Extremely patient, capable of small talk, and continually ‘learning’ (Pepper’s conversational repertoire is constantly being updated via Wi-Fi), Pepper is potentially the ideal companion for children, seniors, and fans of the cute. Currently only available in Japan at a cost of about $10,000 (including maintenance and insurance), you’d better be a pretty big fan of cuteness to invest at this point.


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