Would you respond to advice given from a box of tissues? S Shyam Sundar of Media Effects Research Laboratory wants to know just how comfortable the general public is with talking objects. So he set up a study that involved a plain box of tissues, some lab workers, and a group of normal people as test subjects.
While the test subjects were under the impression they were only participating in a cognitive study, they watched as a tissue box responded to sneezes with ‘bless you’, ‘here’, take a tissue’ and ‘take care’. Though a tissue box doesn’t look like a robot or smart phone, most participants responded positively to the small talking box.