In a new video project, part of which is launching on the Sedition platform, Universal Everything speculate on the future of machine human interaction.
Machine Learning is part of the design studio’s ongoing Hype Cycle series of futurist films which combine performance and new technologies to ask how humans and machines will interact in future across physical and digital boundaries. Hype Cycle is inspired by trend graphs of the same name produced by Gartner Research, which aim to predict the future impact of new technologies. The series looks at how ‘smart matter’ - digitised physical matter - could interact and interface with human actions.
Machine Learning is set in a dance studio and features dancers teaching robots how to move like a human. The movements of the robots in the videos progress, becoming more and more refined and complex. The robot’s movements evolve as it learns; dancer and the robot gradually synchronise movements and begin to challenge and compete with one another as their interactions become increasingly sophisticated.
The project includes a number of videos featuring different robot-human learning partnerships. One of the videos, Machine Learning – Teacher: Mr Simms, Student: Ruby is launching on Sedition as a limited edition digital artwork.
The Machine Learning project raises many interesting questions. Can the robot keep up with the dancer? At what point does the robot outperform the dancer? Would a robot ever perform just for pleasure? Does giving a machine a name give it a soul? When will machines achieve human agility?