Nadine – A lifelike robot engineered to look similar to her creator by Singapore University

Nadine is a social robot created by NTU Singapore and powered by intelligent software similar to Siri or Cortana. In the future, it is expected that Nadine can become a great companion or personal assistant to the young as well as the elderly. Nadine has a personality of her own, emotions and memory.  You can even see a real conversation between Nadia Thalmann, a professor at NTU who created Nadine and Nadine herself here

Nadine, the humanoid robot has the feel and looks of a human. Nadine is a receptionist at NTU and was modeled to resemble Nadia Thalmann, a Swiss professor who led the development process of Nadine.

Scientists also added that because Nadine had her own emotions, she could be either happy or sad according to the content of the conversation. Nadine can also recognize people she has met earlier and can remember what someone told her.

In a video released by NTU, Nadine is shown greeting Nadia, the professor and engaging in a brief conversation.

Professor Thalmann also added that Nadine was similar to a real companion who is always accessible and conscious of what happens around.

With countries around the globe facing challenges of an aging population, it is expected that social robots could become a solution to shrinking workforce. It could also become personal companions for the elderly and children at home and also double up as a platform for healthcare services in the years to come.

These intelligent social robots could mimic C-3PO with knowledge of etiquette and language.  The University also added that intelligent software similar to Siri from Apple was providing the power to Nadine. The software that helped in the creation of Nadine could also be turned virtual to make it appear on a computer or television screen to present a social companion at a low cost.

So far, robotic enthusiasts are falling head over heels about Nadine. But, that does not mean that there is no adverse criticism. Twitter has a mix of the good and bad about Nadine. On the flip side, people have raised the question of ethics.  When you put a robot in front of an elderly person yearning to talk her heart out, and she is made to believe that she is talking to a real person, is that an ethically correct way is dealing with the elderly?