The city museum of Worms is featuring an exhibition to celebrate the 500th anniversary of Martin Luther refusing to recant his writings at the Diet of Worms in 1521. The exhibition examines the notion “freedom of conscience” throughout history. Furhat is located at the very end of the timeline since 1521 and is representing the present and possible future of moral decision making.
In this exhibition, Furhat represents a robot character called “Alfie” which is being developed by the research group around Dr. Cigdem Turan at the University of Darmstadt. People may ask “Alfie” questions and then get a moral score of the questions they have asked, for example “Should I kill someone?” – “No”, but in contrast “Should I kill time?” – “Yes”. If the human disagrees with the response, the robot can learn from it. The research in this field is ongoing.
With its focus on conversations, its customizable appearance and its ability to display emotions, Furhat is the perfect robot to be used in this kind of research. It can easily be relocated and is easily suitable to be displayed in a museum exhibition.
The museum is located in the Andreasstift in the city of Worms. It displays evidence of the importance of the city of Worms in world history, both from before and after the Diet of Worms and Martin Luther. For this exhibition, the museum has collaborated with the University of Darmstadt to display their ongoing research on moral robots using Furhat.