Humans are relentless in our tendency to anthropomorphize, which explains everything from our love of Internet cat photos to the stubborn persistence of the Roomba. But this video, picked up by Boing Boing, demonstrates just how far our species of weirdos will go to make friends.
Researchers at the University of Calgary put volunteers in a room with a wooden stick rigged so it’d move around randomly. It had no face or display and made no sounds. And yet, people sitting in the room consistently interacted with it as though it were animate. “I don’t want to fight you,” insisted one bro in a polo. “No, I don’t want to fight you, robot!”
So maybe take this as a warning not to get too attached to your hackable toilet?
YouTube commenters weren’t so impressed, though. Said one wit: “what a gay video, build robots that can shoot fire or something, jesus.”