Grace, the Mother of Robot Breakthroughs

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"Grace, the Mother of Robot Breakthroughs," title in BusinessWeek online, 2 August 2002. Also covered by the Associated Press in a story reprinted on titled "New robot has social skills."

To meet the "Robot Challenge" of the AAAI: "Without human guidance or a preprogrammed map, Grace was to find her way to the registration counter of the American Association for Artificial Intelligence's 2002 conference, sign in, navigate to the elevators leading to the conference rooms, 'schmooze' with people in the elevator and hallways, take her place behind the podium, and deliver a lecture about herself." GRACE stands for "Graduate Robot Attending Conference (or "ConfErence"?) and embodies the quest for AI that includes social skills. The Salon/AP story quotes project coordinator Reid Simmons, saying that "the robot was made female because he believes women communicate better than men"; Simmons "solicited drama students to teach GRACE how to act like a human so it will make people feel comfortable." [] ALSO: [] 2002.