Are We Too Trusting of Technology?

by Jon Follett

Episode Summary

This week on The Digital Life, we discuss the question: "Are we too trusting of technology?"

It takes time to build trust in technology — using e-mail instead of mail, for instance, or using a credit card to purchase something online, rather than going to the store and paying there. But we now have a host of new, emerging technologies that could help us navigate life and death situations. How do we develop trust in these new systems?

An study conducted by the Georgia Institute of Technology, placed people in a fake emergency situation to see whether they would blindly follow a robot, rather than trust their own instincts. According to the researchers, 26 out of the 30 participants decided to follow the robot, even though it was clear that it was potentially leading them in the wrong direction and into a dangerous scenario. What kinds of questions does this raise for battlefield robots or even surgical robots? How do we maintain a healthy skepticism, but still incorporate such emerging technologies into our lives?

People Blindly Follow Their Robot Leaders


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Topics: Podcast