Source: HBR, Jun 2016
A good human apprentice is a keen observer, inferring unspoken rules and customs, watching how others work, and then generalizing this knowledge for new situations. We are able to accomplish this partly because the human mind is able to process very complex information very efficiently. This type of inference has traditionally been hard for machines to perform.
Roboticists are starting to reverse-engineer the human mind by translating the cognitive models that humans use intuitively into computational models that machines can use. With this approach, robots and humans working in pairs have been able to accomplish complex tasks as well or better than human teams.
My research group, the Interactive Robotics Group at MIT, leveraged this insight to design a computational model that replicates the inherent structure in how a team discusses and negotiates a plan. … our most recent studies show that robots can learn the complex decision-making strategies of experts performing real-world tasks in defense and health care.