Science & Technology

Monkeys Experience the Uncanny Valley Effect, Just Like Humans

The 5 monkey faces (left to proper): wireframe, greyscale, furless, naturalistic, and real-life footage. 4 expressions (prime to backside): impartial, worry grin, lip smacking, menace. Credit score: Siebert et al., eNeuro 2020

Monkeys Recognize Lifelike Animation: New Practical Avatar Can Overcome Uncanny Valley Impact

Monkeys can overcome their aversion to animated monkeys by means of a extra reasonable avatar, in keeping with analysis just lately revealed in eNeuro.

Humans really feel extra snug towards life-like humanoid robots, but when a robotic will get too life-like, it may turn out to be creepy. This “uncanny valley” impact plagues monkeys, too, which turns into an issue when scientists use animated monkey faces to review social habits. Nonetheless, monkeys overcome the uncanny valley when introduced with a sufficiently reasonable monkey avatar created utilizing film trade animation expertise.

Siebert et al. in contrast how Rhesus monkeys reacted towards 5 forms of monkey faces: video footage from actual monkeys, a natural-looking avatar with fur and facial particulars, a furless avatar, a greyscale avatar, and a wireframe face. The monkeys checked out the wireframe face however prevented taking a look at the furless and greyscale avatars, displaying the uncanny valley impact at work. Nonetheless, the natural-looking avatar with fur overcame this impact. The monkeys checked out the mannequin and made social facial expressions, akin to how they might act round actual monkeys. Utilizing any such avatar will make social cognition research extra standardized and replicable.

Reference: “A Naturalistic Dynamic Monkey Head Avatar Elicits Species-Typical Reactions and Overcomes the Uncanny Valley” by Ramona Siebert, Nick Taubert, Silvia Spadacenta, Peter W. Dicke, Martin A. Giese and Peter Thier, 8 June 2020, eNeuro.
DOI: 10.1523/ENEURO.0524-19.2020

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