The paper „Co-Robots as Care Robots“ by Oliver Bendel, Alina Gasser and Joel Siebenmann was accepted at the AAAI 2020 Spring Symposia. From the abstract: „Cooperation and collaboration robots, co-robots or cobots for short, are an integral part of factories. For example, they work closely with the fitters in the automotive sector, and everyone does what they do best. However, the novel robots are not only relevant in production and logistics, but also in the service sector, especially where proximity between them and the users is desired or unavoidable. For decades, individual solutions of a very different kind have been developed in care. Now experts are increasingly relying on co-robots and teaching them the special tasks that are involved in care or therapy. This article presents the advantages, but also the disadvantages of co-robots in care and support, and provides information with regard to human-robot interaction and communication. The article is based on a model that has already been tested in various nursing and retirement homes, namely Lio from F&P Robotics, and uses results from accompanying studies. The authors can show that co-robots are ideal for care and support in many ways. Of course, it is also important to consider a few points in order to guarantee functionality and acceptance.“ The paper had been submitted to the symposium „Applied AI in Healthcare: Safety, Community, and the Environment“. Oliver Bendel will present the results at Stanford University between 23 and 25 March 2020.
Abb.: Ob mit oder ohne Roboter – der Teddy darf nicht fehlen
The paper „Care Robots with Sexual Assistance Functions“ by Oliver Bendel was accepted at the AAAI 2020 Spring Symposia. From the abstract: „Residents in retirement and nursing homes have sexual needs just like other people. However, the semi-public situation makes it difficult for them to satisfy these existential concerns. In addition, they may not be able to meet a suitable partner or find it difficult to have a relationship for mental or physical reasons. People who live or are cared for at home can also be affected by this problem. Perhaps they can host someone more easily and discreetly than the residents of a health facility, but some elderly and disabled people may be restricted in some ways. This article examines the opportunities and risks that arise with regard to care robots with sexual assistance functions. First of all, it deals with sexual well-being. Then it presents robotic systems ranging from sex robots to care robots. Finally, the focus is on care robots, with the author exploring technical and design issues. A brief ethical discussion completes the article. The result is that care robots with sexual assistance functions could be an enrichment of the everyday life of people in need of care, but that we also have to consider some technical, design and moral aspects.“ The paper had been submitted to the symposium „Applied AI in Healthcare: Safety, Community, and the Environment“. Oliver Bendel will present the paper at Stanford University between 23 and 25 March 2020.
Fig.: Should care robots have sexual assistance functions?
In his lecture at the Orient-Institut Istanbul on 18 December 2019, Oliver Bendel dealt with care robots as well as therapy and surgery robots. He presented well-known and less known examples and clarified the goals, tasks and characteristics of these service robots in the healthcare sector. Afterwards he investigates current and future functions of care robots, including sexual assistance functions. Against this background, the lecture considered both the perspective of information ethics and machine ethics. In the end, it became clear which robot types and prototypes or products are available in healthcare, which purposes they fulfil, which functions they assume, how the healthcare system changes through their use and which implications and consequences this has for the individual and society. The lecture took place within the series „Human, medicine and society: past, present and future encounters“ … The Orient-Institut Istanbul is a turkological and regional scientific research institute in the association of the Max Weber Foundation. In close cooperation with Turkish and international scientists, it dedicates itself to a multitude of different research areas. More information via www.oiist.org.
Robots in the health sector are important, valuable innovations and supplements. As therapy and nursing robots, they take care of us and come close to us. In addition, other service robots are widespread in nursing and retirement homes and hospitals. With the help of their sensors, all of them are able to recognize us, to examine and classify us, and to evaluate our behavior and appearance. Some of these robots will pass on our personal data to humans and machines. They invade our privacy and challenge the informational autonomy. This is a problem for the institutions and the people that needs to be solved. The article „The Spy who Loved and Nursed Me: Robots and AI Systems in Healthcare from the Perspective of Information Ethics“ by Oliver Bendel presents robot types in the health sector, along with their technical possibilities, including their sensors and their artificial intelligence capabilities. Against this background, moral problems are discussed, especially from the perspective of information ethics and with respect to privacy and informational autonomy. One of the results shows that such robots can improve the personal autonomy, but the informational autonomy is endangered in an area where privacy has a special importance. At the end, solutions are proposed from various disciplines and perspectives. The article was published in Telepolis on December 17, 2018 and can be accessed via www.heise.de/tp/features/The-Spy-who-Loved-and-Nursed-Me-4251919.html.
Michael und Susan Leigh Anderson stellen beim Berliner Kolloquium 2019 ihre neuesten Ergebnisse aus der Disziplin der Maschinenethik vor. Üblicherweise werden sogenannten moralischen Maschinen starre Regeln gegeben, an die sie sich sozusagen sklavisch halten. Dies hat einige Vorteile, aber auch ein paar Nachteile, denen man mit Hilfe von maschinellem Lernen entgegentreten kann. Genau diesen Ansatz haben die Andersons zusammen mit einem Forscher vom Max-Planck-Institut für Intelligente Systeme verfolgt, wobei die Altenpflege als Kontext diente: „Contrary to those who regard such a goal as unattainable, Michael and Susan Leigh Anderson … and Vincent Berenz … have succeeded in programming a SoftBank Nao robot with a set of values that determines its behavior while aiding a person in a simulated eldercare environment. This unprecedented accomplishment uses machine learning to enable the robot to discern how each of its actions would satisfy or violate its ethical duties in the current situation and decide the best action to take.“ (Machine Ethics) Die Ergebnisse werden 2019 in den Proceedings of the IEEE publiziert. Der wissenschaftliche Leiter des 23. Berliner Kolloquiums zu Pflegerobotern ist Oliver Bendel. Die Anmeldung erfolgt über die Website der Daimler und Benz Stiftung.
Abb.: Ein Nao-Roboter (Foto: SoftBank/Philippe Dureuil, CC-BY-SA-4.0)
„Hosted by the University of Basel and inaugurated by State Secretary Mauro Dell’Ambrogio, the swissnexDay’16 will be devoted to exploring the future of ageing with a panel of distinguished experts. Interactive breakout sessions covering a variety of topics will be organised in the second part of the event. Furthermore, two networking breaks will give participants the opportunity to connect with the swissnex representatives and the Science and Technology Counselors (STC), as well as with 250 representatives from Switzerland’s education, research and innovation community.“ (Website swissnex) The swissnexDay’16 will take place at the University of Basel (December 15, 2016). The second break-out session „Care-Robots – an elderly’s best friend?“ starts shortly after 4 pm. Kyoko Suzuki (Deputy Head, S&T Tokyo), Christiana Tsiourti (University of Geneva) and Christine Fahlberg (School of Business FHNW, master student of Prof. Dr. Oliver Bendel) will present their current research and discuss about robots in healthcare. Keynote speakers of the swissnexDay’16 are Prof. Dr. Andrea Schenker-Wicki (President, University of Basel), Dr. med. Guy Morin (President of the Executive Council of the Canton of Basel-Stadt) and State Secretary Mauro Dell’Ambrogio (State Secretariat for Education, Research and Innovation). Further information via www.swissnex.org/news/swissnexdays/.
„Robotik für den Pflegebereich boomt. In dem Arbeitsfeld fehlt Personal und es fällt oft schwere körperliche Arbeit an, für die Hilfe willkommen wäre.“ (derStandard.at, 7. Mai 2016) Dies schreibt Gudrun Springer im österreichischen Standard. Ausgangspunkt des Artikels ist die öffentliche Sitzung der Bioethikkommission in Wien vom 2. Mai, bei der Prof. Dr. Oliver Bendel, Prof. Dr. Mark Coeckelbergh, Prof. Dr. Michael Decker, Prof. Dr. Jutta Weber und Markus Wohlmannstetter zum Thema Pflegeroboter vorgetragen haben. Die Verfasserin geht auf das Tandem-Prinzip ein, das Oliver Bendel in seinem Referat erwähnt hat und seit einiger Zeit propagiert. Auch Mark Coeckelbergh ist laut ihrer Aussage diesem Prinzip zugetan. Es sei besser, „Roboter als assistierende Technologien … im Tandem“ (derStandard.at, 7. Mai 2016) zu benutzen. Weiter schreibt sie: „Oliver Bendel von der Hochschule für Wirtschaft in Basel, der sich mit Auswirkungen des Roboters auf Menschen beschäftigt, meint, dass mancher Handgriff vom Menschen ausgeführt einem Pflegebedürftigen unangenehmer sein kann als vom technischen Helfer – etwa in der Intimpflege.“ (derStandard.at, 7. Mai 2016) Auch zu informationsethischen und rechtlichen Herausforderungen äußert er sich: „Andere wichtige Fragen, die für Bendel durch die Roboter aufkommen, betreffen den Datenschutz.“ (derStandard.at, 7. Mai 2016) Der Artikel mit dem Titel „Der Roboter im Pflegeheim“ ist über derstandard.at/2000036444112/Der-Roboter-im-Pflegeheim abrufbar.
Abb.: Seife braucht auch der Robot, wenn er jemanden waschen will