Retaining Human-Robots Conversation: Comparing Single Robot to Multiple Robots in a Real Event
Takamasa Iio, Yuichiro Yoshikawa, and Hiroshi Ishiguro
Osaka University / JST ERATO
1-3 Machikaneyama, Toyonaka, Osaka 560-8531, Japan
In human-robot conversation in a real environment, low speech recognition and unnatural response generation are critical issues. Most autonomous conversational robotic systems avoid these issues by restricting user input and robot responses. However, such restrictions often render the interaction boring because the conversation becomes predictable. In this study, we propose the use of multiple robots as a solution for this problem. To explore the effect of multiple robots on a conversation, we developed an autonomous conversational robotic system and conducted a field trial in a real event. Our system adopted a button interface, which restricted user input within positive or negative intention, and maintained a conversation by choosing the most suitable of the prepared static scenarios. Through the field trial, we found that visitors who conversed with multiple robots continued their conversation for a more prolonged period, and their experience improved their impression on the conversation, in contrast to the visitors who conversed with a single robot.
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