How women think robots perceive them - As if robots were men

Matthijs A. Pontier, Johannes Ferdinand Hoorn

Research output: Chapter in book / Conference proceedingConference article published in proceeding or bookAcademic researchpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


In previous studies, we developed an empirical account of user engagement with software agents. We formalized this model, tested it for internal consistency, and implemented it into a series of software agents to have them build up an affective relationship with their users. In addition, we equipped the agents with a module for affective decision-making, as well as the capability to generate a series of emotions (e.g., joy and anger). As follow-up of a successful pilot study with real users, the current paper employs a non-naïve version of a Turing Test to compare an agent's affective performance with that of a human. We compared the performance of an agent equipped with our cognitive model to the performance of a human that controlled the agent in a Wizard of Oz condition during a speed-dating experiment in which participants were told they were dealing with a robot in both conditions. Participants did not detect any differences between the two conditions in the emotions the agent experienced and in the way he supposedly perceived the participants. As is, our model can be used for designing believable virtual agents or humanoid robots on the surface level of emotion expression.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationICAART 2013 - Proceedings of the 5th International Conference on Agents and Artificial Intelligence
Number of pages9
Publication statusPublished - 27 May 2013
Externally publishedYes
Event5th International Conference on Agents and Artificial Intelligence, ICAART 2013 - Barcelona, Spain
Duration: 15 Feb 201318 Feb 2013


Conference5th International Conference on Agents and Artificial Intelligence, ICAART 2013


  • Cognitive modeling
  • Emotion modeling
  • Human-computer interaction
  • Turing test
  • Virtual agents

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Artificial Intelligence

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