When humanoids and humans manage to synchronize their movements

Researchers from the University of Cergy-Pontoise, the College of Sainte-Croix and the University of Montpellier have just released the results of their research on the behavior of robots with humans.

A free article on the site PLOS ONE explains the dynamics of their exchanges. In this case, robots tend to synchronize their movements with those of humans. They act as if they have established a bond with each other.

Scientists pushed their investigations and succeeded in proving that the interactions between humans and animals were similar. They wondered if the relationships between one human and one robot are the same.

An experiment to test the reactions of a humanoid robot

To find an answer to this question, the same researchers asked fifteen volunteers to chat with a robot called “Nao”. This is a human-like robot completely autonomous. It can therefore move and move on its own. What’s more, Nao is scheduled for to act and this move like a man.

His reactions to the fifteen volunteers made it possible to determine whether there is a synchronization between man and machine. Their movements were recorded and then compared during this experiment. Recent studies have shown that people tend to synchronize their movements in a communicative situation. They explain that the mechanism of this link is not at all conscious.

Nao synchronized his movements with those of the volunteers

The scientists asked the participants to perform the same exercise: they had to sit facing the robot, extend their arms horizontally, then wave them up and down. The results of this experiment are staggering: Nao repeated the same arm gestures. He wanted to synchronously copy the movements of the person in front of him. The scientists explained that the robot used at a advanced algorithm to achieve this.

In addition, an in-depth study of the video images shows that fourteen of the fifteen volunteers synchronized their movements with those of the robot. After investigation, they were unable to say whether they did it on purpose or not. They were also unable to state with certainty whether the humanoid robot is there for something. On the other hand, the fifteenth candidate intentionally refused to synchronize with Nao.


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