Tom Williams


Proceedings of the 2022 Inclusive HRI Workshop on Equity and Diversity in Design, Application, Methods, and Community

Publication Year

Significant segments of the HRI literature rely on or promote the ability to reason about human traits like age, gender, and cultural background. In parallel, a significant number of researchers in the Computer Vision community are promoting new methods for (ostensibly) automatically recognizing these types of traits, including race. In this paper, I will argue against the representation, recognition, or reasoning over race by interactive robots, on the basis of ontological, perceptual, and deployment-oriented concerns, and explain why these concerns outweigh other reasonable concerns regarding the risks of colorblindness. Finally, I conclude with a discussion of what this means for the HRI community, and speculate as to possible paths forward.