Brain neurophysiology to objectify the social competence of conversational agents

Abstract : We present an approach to objectify the social competence of artificial agents using human brain neurophysiology. Whole brain activity is recorded with functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) while participants discuss either with a human confederate or an artificial agent. This allows a direct comparison of local brain responses, including deep brain structures invisible to other neuroimaging techniques, as a function of the nature of the interlocutor. The present data (9 participants, artificial agent is the robotic conversational head Furhat controlled with a Wizard of Oz procedure) demonstrates the feasibility of this approach, and results confirm an increased activity in the hypothalamic region when interacting with a human compared to an artificial agent. 1
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Thierry Chaminade, Birgit Rauchbauer, Bruno Nazarian, Morgane Bourhis, Magalie Ochs, et al.. Brain neurophysiology to objectify the social competence of conversational agents. Human-Agent Interaction, Dec 2018, Southampton, United Kingdom. ⟨10.1145/123_4⟩. ⟨hal-01973552⟩



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