Name: Rob Wortham
Location: Bath, UK
What do you do? I’m a PhD researcher in the Department of Computer Science at The University of Bath. I’m interested in how people interact with artificial intelligence, particularly robots. Specifically, I’m working on how we can build robots which are easier to understand in terms of their behaviour, capabilities and goals. This will allow people to better understand them as machines, and assess the robot’s capabilities and limitations. In this way, people will be able use robots more effectively and are less likely to be frustrated, scared, or deceived by them.
What can you see? My lab window looks out onto the back of the Physics building. Its not a great view, until you notice the armour wearing mouse, dressed as a knight – hanging from the beam. Once I noticed it, I always see it that way. Seeing faces and human/animal shapes is one of the things our brain does all the time. It’s a result of the way we evolved. Better to see a face that’s not there, than to miss one that is!
When I’m not doing science I.. spend time with my wife and grown up children. I also play guitar, ski and I like sci fi movies. But my PhD is mostly what I spend my time on at the moment.
If you’d like to find out more about Rob’s work you can find him on twitter @RobWortham or take a look at his website http://www.robwortham.com/