Computer scientists are developing machines that can teach people simple skills, like household tasks and vocabulary, reports the New York Times. A dark-haired 6-year-old is playing with a new companion. The two hit it off quickly—unusual for the 6-year-old, who has autism—and the boy is imitating his playmate’s every move, now nodding his head, now raising his arms. “Like Simon Says,” says the autistic boy’s mother, seated next to him on the floor. Yet soon he begins to withdraw; in a video of the session, he covers his ears and slumps against the wall. But the companion, a three-foot-tall robot...
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