2020 Internet2 Global Summit

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General Session: Keynote Speaker Dr. Kate Darling

Time 03/30/20 10:30AM-11:45AM

Sponsored by Fortinet

Session sponsored by

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Session Abstract

The Future of Human-Robot Interaction

The robots are coming and they’re getting smarter, evolving from single-task devices (think Roomba) into machines that can make their own decisions and autonomously navigate public spaces. From transportation systems, hospitals, and the military, to the robotization of our workplaces and households, robots will be everywhere and will increasingly interact with people.

Whether you find it exhilarating or terrifying (or both), progress in robotics and related fields like AI raises new ethical quandaries and challenges legal codes created for a world in which a sharp line separates man from machine.
Drawing from her recent work exploring humans’ emotional responses to robots, Dr. Kate Darling answers questions like:
What happens when robots move from behind factory walls into shared spaces and begin interacting with

  • What opportunities and challenges should we anticipate in the future of human-robot interaction?

  • Where does the true potential of AI and robotics lie, and will robots supplement human ability, or replace it?

  • Why do people treat robots like living things, and why does that matter?

  • What can and can’t robots and AI do?

  • What societal challenges will we face in a future with robots (ethical, legal, and social)?

Dr. Darling examines why people fear some robots and empathize with others, while also prompting—and answering—questions about what society’s relationship with these robots could look like in the future. What follows is in part an examination of the technology itself, but ultimately, offers a window into how it’s poised to change the way we relate to each other and our own humanity—and why it matters.


Keynote Speaker Kate Darling