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Robot recognizes self in mirror

A robot named Qbo is placed in front of a mirror and learns to recognize itself.

A robot that looks like a little green Martian in a snowsuit has learned to recognize itself in the mirror — and is pleased with what it sees.

Mirror-self recognition is a hallmark of intelligence in animals, something found in primates, dolphins and elephants, for example, but not dogs.


On the robot's blog, the Thecorpora engineers said they wondered what would happen if Qbo sees itself in the mirror, noting that the robot is programmed with face and object recognition capabilities.

As seen in the video, Qbo is trained to recognize itself and, when it does, give the programmed response: "Oh, this is me. Nice." 

"This quite simple experiment touches interesting psychological aspects of self-consciousness," the blog reads. 

The researchers are working on programming the robot so it can recognize itself autonomously when found in front of the mirror, one step closer to true self awareness.

While robots don't yet rule the world, they are getting smarter.

More on robots and intelligence:


John Roach is a contributing writer for msnbc.com. To learn more about him, check out his website. For more of our Future of Technology series, watch the featured video below.

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