Vivek Pravat

Should robots have emotions? – Part 1

Automations that are crafted in our own image have been a staple of human imagination since the ancient Greeks. From Daedalus’ statues and Pygmalion’s bride to Asimov’s robots, literature has come a long way, but that old dream still endures. Now, with the advent of ever more sophisticated machine-learning technologies, the creation of humanoid robots may be just within our reach. Humanoid, as in, human in form and behaviour. And what characteristics better capture the essence of what makes us human than reason and emotion—the happy confluence of which has given us the ability to chart the course of the stars above and wax lyrical over the fluttering of a butterfly in the realm below? Logic has been the one defining trait of computing systems since their inception. Is it time to infuse them with emotion?