Alac2011a

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Alac2011a
BibType ARTICLE
Key Alac2011a
Author(s) Morana Alač, Javier Movellan, Fumihide Tanaka
Title When a robot is social: Spatial arrangements and multimodal semiotic engagement in the practice of social robotics
Editor(s)
Tag(s) EMCA, Robots, Multimodality, body, design, gesture, human–robot interaction, laboratory, social agency, social robotics, spatial organization
Publisher
Year 2011
Language
City
Month
Journal Social Studies of Science
Volume 41
Number 6
Pages 893–926
URL Link
DOI 10.1177/0306312711420565
ISBN
Organization
Institution
School
Type
Edition
Series
Howpublished
Book title
Chapter

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Abstract

Social roboticists design their robots to function as social agents in interaction with humans and other robots. Although we do not deny that the robot’s design features are crucial for attaining this aim, we point to the relevance of spatial organization and coordination between the robot and the humans who interact with it. We recover these interactions through an observational study of a social robotics laboratory and examine them by applying a multimodal interactional analysis to two moments of robotics practice. We describe the vital role of roboticists and of the group of preverbal infants, who are involved in a robot’s design activity, and we argue that the robot’s social character is intrinsically related to the subtleties of human interactional moves in laboratories of social robotics. This human involvement in the robot’s social agency is not simply controlled by individual will. Instead, the human–machine couplings are demanded by the situational dynamics in which the robot is lodged.

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