That's no surprise. It has taken millions of years for humans to evolve and develop language skills. The book, 'Clan of the Cave Bears' fascinated me when I first read it about thirty years ago. In the novel, Neanderthal and modern humans made first contact and used body postures to express most of their social dictates. How could modern man install intricate details that have led mankind to this point?
Asimo, developed in 1996 and working as a tour guide at the museum for a four week trial, cannot respond to voice commands. The robot is only designed to answer 100 questions selected via touchscreen from a written panel. During a demonstration, it froze and asked: "Who wants to ask Asimo a question?" repeatedly when people pointed their cameras at it. Asimo can recognize a child waving to it, but it's not able to comprehend the meaning of the waving.
Interaction with humans is the next big step for robotics. Experts are working on safe human-robot interaction. Rather than concentrating on making robots compliant, they want to instill advanced social intelligence. For example, if a robot is handing you something hot or sharp, it needs to know whether it has your attention.
I rarely use gestures when talking to my husband. Yet, when he's particularly agitated, his hands fly around, sometimes just missing my face.
Sitting at my computer most of the day, I don't have face-to-face contact with anyone. Maybe I've lost my communication skills. Last week, I went out to lunch with two women I'd only contacted through phone calls and via my husband. A strange awareness came over me while I was talking. My hands were joining in the conversation.
How about you? Do you make use of body language?