Meaningful Futures with Robots : Designing a New Coexistence book cover
1st Edition

Meaningful Futures with Robots
Designing a New Coexistence

ISBN 9781032246482
Published November 30, 2022 by Chapman & Hall
291 Pages 104 Color Illustrations

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Book Description

Soon, robots will leave the factories and make their way into living rooms, supermarkets, and care facilities. They will cooperate with humans in everyday life, taking on more than just practical tasks. How should they communicate with us? Do they need eyes, a screen, or arms? Should they resemble humans? Or may they enrich social situations precisely because they act so differently from humans?

Meaningful Futures with Robots: Designing a New Coexistence provides insight into the opportunities and risks that arise from living with robots in the future, anchored in current research projects on everyday robotics. As well as generating ideas for robot developers and designers, it also critically discusses existing theories and methods for social robotics from different perspectives - ethical, design, artistical and technological – and presents new approaches to meaningful human-robot interaction design.

Key Features:

  • Provides insights into current research on robots from different disciplinary angles with a particular focus on a value-driven design.
  • Includes contributions from designers, psychologists, engineers, philosophers, artists, and legal scholars, among others.


Licence line: Chapters 1, 3, 12, and 15 of this book are available for free in PDF format as Open Access from the individual product page at They have been made available under a Creative Commons Attribution-Non Commercial-No Derivatives 4.0 license.

Table of Contents

1. Towards Designing Meaningful Relationships with Robots

2. Concept and Content of the Book

Part 1 Designing a New Species Interaction Design and Product Design of Robots

3. How to Design Robots with Superpowers

Robin Neuhaus, Ronda Ringfort Felner, Judith Dörrenbächer, Marc Hassenzahl

4. Social Robots Should Mediate, not Replace, Social Interactions

Timo Kaerlein

5. Neither Human Nor Computer —A Symbiotic Human-Robot Collaboration in Autism Therapy

Ronda Ringfort-Felner, Judith Dörrenbächer

6.  Counting Characters and Spaces—On Robot Disabilities, Robot Care, and Technological Dependencies

Lenneke Kuijer

7. Designing Robots with Personality

Lara Christoforakos, Sarah Diefenbach, Daniel Ullrich

8.  Designing Robots as Social Counterparts— A Discussion about a Technology Claiming its Own Needs

Lara Christoforakos, Tobias Störzinger

9. Falling in Love With a Machine— What Happens if the Only Affection a Person Gets is From Machines?

Felix Carros (F.C.), Anne Wierling (A.W.), Adrian Preussner (A.P.)

10.  I am Listening to You!—How to Make Different Robotic Species Speak the Same Language

Judith Dörrenbächer, Anne Wierling

11. How to Really Get in Touch with Robots—Haptic Interaction Technologies for VR and Teleoperation

Bernhard Weber, Thomas Hulin, Lisa Schiffer

Part 2 Designing Future Enviroments—Social Innovation Initiated by Robots

12. Design Fiction—The Future of Robots Needs Imagination

Ronda Ringfort-Felner, Robin Neuhaus, Judith Dörrenbächer, Marc Hassenzahl

13. Cramer’s Funeral Service for Androids

Uwe Post

14. Googly Eyes

Marc Hassenzahl

15 Empathizing with Robots—Animistic and Performative Methods to Anticipate a Robot’s Impact

Judith Dörrenbächer, Marc Hassenzahl

16. From the Lab to a Real-World Supermarket— About Anticipating the Chances and Challenges of a Shopping

Robot Robin Neuhaus, Judith Dörrenbächer

17. Dominant, Persuasive or Polite?— About Human Curiosity, Provocative Users and Solving Conflicts between Humans and Robots

Judith Dörrenbächer

18. Seven Observations, or Why Domestic Robots are Struggling to Enter the Habitats of Everyday Life

James Auger

19. Is this a Patient or a Wall?— Adapting Robots from an Industrial Context to a Rehabilitation Clinic

Jochen Feitsch, Bernhard Weber

20. Robotics x Book Studies Imagining a Robotic Archive of Embodied Knowledge

Corinna Norrick-Rühl

21. "That’s the Future, I’m Telling You.”

Antje Herden

22. Graphic Recording Cool Johanna Benz

Part 3 Designing together with People— Civic Participation and Ethical Implications Concerning Robots

23. Citizen Participation in Social Robotics Research

Felix Carros, Johanna Langendorf, Dave Randall, Rainer Wieching, Volker Wulf

24. Learning from Each Other— How Roboticists Learn from Users and how Users Teach their Robots

Felix Carros, Adrian Preussner

25. My Friend Simsala, the Robot

Edi Haug, Laura M. Schwengber

26. Move Away from the Stereotypical User in the Picture-perfect Scenario—A Plea for Early and Broad User Integration

Stephanie Häusler Weiss, Kilian Röhm, Tobias Störzinger

27. Is it Good?— A Philosophical Approach Towards Ethics Centered- Design (ECD)

Catrin Misselhorn, Manuel Scheidegger, Tobias Störzinger

28. Are Robots Good at Everything? A Robot in an Elementary School

Elke Buttgereit

29. The Medium has a Message Educational Robots in a Didactic Triangle

Scarlet Schaffrath

30. The Friendly Siblings of Workhorses and Killer Robots—About Becoming Alive Through the Nonliving, and Feeling Blessed by a Religious Machine

Ilona Nord

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Dr. Judith Dörrenbächer is a design researcher at the chair for “Ubiquitous Design / Experience and Interaction” at the University of Siegen. Educated in design, her current focus is on performative methods in design, on theories about animism transferred to HCI and design (techno-animism) and on interaction and design strategies of social robots.

Ronda Ringfort-Felner is a research assistant at the chair for “Ubiquitous Design / Experience and Interaction” at the University of Siegen. With a background in design and HCI, her research focuses on design fiction, the design and exploration of future intelligent autonomous systems such as social robots, and the exploration of the related societal and social implications.

Robin Neuhaus is a research assistant at the chair for “Ubiquitous Design / Experience and Interaction“ at the University of Siegen. With a background in industrial design and HCI, his current research focuses on the design of experiences and interactions with robots, voice assistants and other non-human actors.

Dr. Marc Hassenzahl is Professor for "Ubiquitous Design / Experience and Interaction" at the University of Siegen. He combines his training in psychology with a love for interaction design. With his group of designers and psychologists, he explores the theory and practice of designing pleasurable, meaningful and transforming interactive technologies.