The Plausibility Problem: An Initial Analysis

  • Benedict du Boulay
  • Rosemary Luckin
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 2117)


Many interactive systems in everyday use carry out roles that are also performed - or have previously been performed - by human beings. Our expectations of how such systems will and, more importantly, should, behave is tempered both by our experience of how humans normally perform in those roles and by our experience and beliefs about what it is possible and reasonable for machines to do. So, an important factor underpinning the acceptability of such systems is the plausibility with which the role they are performing is viewed by their users.

We identify three kinds of potential plausibility issue, depending on whether (i) the system is seen by its users to be a machine acting in its own right, or (ii) the machine is seen to be a proxy, either acting on behalf of a human or providing a channel of communication to a human, or (iii) the status of the machine is unclear between the first two cases.


Intelligent Tutor System Human Tutor Human Teacher Remote Machine Learning Companion 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  • Benedict du Boulay
    • 1
  • Rosemary Luckin
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Cognitive and Computing SciencesUniversity of SussexBrightonUK

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