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Intervention “Emotional Machines” at POM Berlin 2021

POM Conference Berlin 2021 opened with the intervention "Emotional machines»

The intervention was initiated by Hege Tapio, Phd fellow at FeLT with the invited independent researchers Marco Donnarumma and Florence Razoux — with the intent to create some collective thinking about emotion technology and to shape some perspectives on possibilities and impossibilities to the convergence of emotion and machine.

Razoux contributed with the expertice from biology serving some fundamentals of how emotions are expressed within the biological systems of humans, also including recent artistic research investigating human tears. Donnarumma presented the project “Amygdala” followed by some reflections on possible concerns of the commercialization of emotions.

Tapio presented how the term and current research of affective technology has created a venue for the anticipated use of emotion technology within commercial industry, social media, personal assistants, healthcare sector, gaming industries and emotive responsive vehicles. Further inviting to speculations about embedded technology and posing the question about the future implications if machines where to reflect, respond, harvest or even copy our less empathic and endearing emotions – asking how we would deal with intelligent systems with bad mood swings or machines that would even lash out on you.

Tapio summed up that as we seem to chase the romantic vision of constructing an interface with intelligent empathic machines we would also need to (re)consider a machine with Emotional and Intelligent system reflecting the full specter of emotions.

Text and photo: Hege Tapio