The Empathic Futures Experiment – Creating an Archive of Human-Machine Communication

Empathy and communication are important building blocks for trust between humans. Increasingly, machines are starting to speak our language – what does this feel like? How will we communicate with the intelligent machines of the future? And how can we build trust between humans and machines?

To answer these questions, Empathic Futures developed an experiment that confronted people with a hypothetical scenario in which such an intelligent machine of the future already exists. Through an app, 500 participants could chat with their personal mobility-related Empathic Intelligence (E.I.) for 5 days, training it and building a relationship through text conversation.

The aim of the experiment was to inspire participants to think about the possibilities of human-machine communication and relationships.

Since every human being is unique, every conversation is different – explore the entire archive here!



Empathic Futures

A Sneak Peek into the Making of the Experiment

The Empathic Futures experiment – the first step in our research – was based on the assumption that machines will increasingly assist us with our daily needs in the future and that in order for this to happen, it is essential to build trust and empathy between humans and machines.
The experiment asked the question: How do we achieve that? Take a sneak peek into the making of the experiment below.

Talking to the E.I.s

Through text conversations, the E.I.s learnt from the participants, helped them, understood their basic needs and developed a relationship with them. By training the E.I.s, the participants helped to give a personality to the system.

Building an Archive

Through engaging conversations, the participants built an archive of possible human-machine interactions. With this, we aim to gain a better understanding of how to create empathy and trust between humans and machines in the future.

Experiencing the Exhibition

The goal of the Empathic Futures exhibition is to provide an inspiring platform for future-oriented and challenging questions, debates and ideas that redefine our relationship with machines, autonomous systems and vehicles of the future.

Empathic Futures

Experience the Future of Human-Machine

16 November 2017 – 28 February 2018
Mon – Sun: 10:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m.

Financial Drive, Volkswagen Group Forum
Unter den Linden 19a, 10117 Berlin

Download Press Kit…

Our findings from the experiment are showcased in the exhibition, inviting all curious individuals to examine, analyse and interact with the E.I. personalities. With your participation, we can collectively shape the most desirable future.