Philosophy Wire by Spiros Kakos [2014-11-06]: In Denmark, researchers have created an artificial tongue and wine connoisseur, a wine tasting robot that might unseat the entire fraternity of wine critics in the near future. The robot has been built to determine whether expensive wine actually tastes any better than the cheap stuff. In an article published in ACS Nano, the researchers claim that an optical nanosensor, based on surface plasmon resonance, can detect how one experiences the dryness in wine. Another claim made by the researchers, one that will not go down well with wine tasters, is that the nanosensor can detect the tannins — the textural element in wine that makes it taste dry — better than those Belgian wine tasters.  But how can a robot taste? How can it feel without understanding what "feel" means? Take the glass into your hands. Taste the wine. Without analyzing it. In every sip the whole world. No chemistry. No physics. Just you and your loved ones.
Try to taste THAT you stupid robot!
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