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Robotics Hardware

Robots Successfully Invent Their Own Language 159

An anonymous reader writes "One group of Australian researchers have managed to teach robots to do something that, until now, was the reserve of humans and a few other animals: they've taught them how to invent and use spoken language. The robots, called LingoDroids, are introduced to each other. In order to share information, they need to communicate. Since they don't share a common language, they do the next best thing: they make one up. The LingoDroids invent words to describe areas on their maps, speak the word aloud to the other robot, and then find a way to connect the word and the place, the same way a human would point to themselves and speak their name to someone who doesn't speak their language."
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Robots Successfully Invent Their Own Language

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  • by Moryath ( 553296 ) on Wednesday May 18, 2011 @12:36PM (#36167514)

    After looking through the research, you're correct - the article's claims are very much overblown.

    Do they "invent" random words for places? Yes, by throwing random characters as a preprogrammed method. Do they "communicate" this to another robot? Yes.

    Is the other robot preprogrammed to (a) accept pointing as a convention and (b) receive information in the "name, point to place" format: Yes.

    They share a common communication frame. That's the "language" they communicate in. And it was preprogrammed to them. That they are expanding it by "naming places" is amusing, but it's hardcoded behavior only and they could just as easily have been programmed to select an origin spot, name it "Zero", and proceed to create a north-south/east-west grid of positive and negative integers and "communicate" it in the same fashion.

  • by roman_mir ( 125474 ) on Wednesday May 18, 2011 @12:49PM (#36167680) Homepage Journal

    pize, rije, jaya, reya, kuzo, ropi, duka, vupe, puru, puga, huzu, hiza, bula, kobu, yifi, gige, soqe, liye, xala, mira, kopo, heto, zuce, xapo, fili, zuya, fexo, jara.

    The 'language' seems to be limited to 4 letter words, each one has a consonant and a vowel, and then another consonant and another vowel in it. Does not look like a language at all, there is no grammar, there is nothing except basically 4 letter words used as hash keys to point at some areas on a map.

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