Sunday, October 6, 2013

Robot Actors - Awesome Educational Resource

We often think about robots as being cold and unemotional. But robots have great potential as a platform from which their human creators and masters can express feelings and ideas. A few visionaries have realized this, Disney's theme park amusements and movie makers, are some of the better examples. Education is an area in which this largely unexplored potential can see great advantages. There are 2 fronts on which this is likely true: 1) robots as teachers or teaching devices, and 2) making robotic resources available to students (along with instruction in how to use them) and challenging them to produce  robotic creations that express their thoughts, feelings, and ideas in an affective way. See the article and videos below...

 "The Cornish robotic actor coming to a theatre near you: £55,000 Robo-thespian delights and offends audiences

- RoboThespian has in-built cameras, depth perception and facial recognition
- It can adapt its script to the audience during stage shows and guided tours
Several RoboThespians, however, have been attacked for causing offence
They may look more like Wall-E than the raging humanoid robots in 'I, Robot', but these thespian actors are certainly causing a stir.
RoboThespian is the creation of Cornish engineer Will Jackson who had an idea to develop an artistic robot that could react with its audiences. Six years ago he embarked on a project to create a robot that would save tour guides from tediously repeating the same script each day.
Today, around 35 RoboThespians are delighting theatre-goers and tourists throughout the world.
They are also trained to recognise gestures such as waving goodbye and are able to copy body poses. They are multi-lingual and can even sing. But not everyone is pleased with the humanoid robots. Jackson told Humans Invent how one RoboThespian was punched by someone in Germany..."

...The company claims that increasingly academic research groups and universities are using the robots in their research and development platforms...

...A restaurant in Seoul, where robots cook all the food and robots take your order, is also using RoboThespians as part of its operations. 
Meanwhile, three RoboThespians recently reached new artistic heights by appearing in a live stage show, the Legend of Robotland: Tria’s Star, featuring a completely robotic cast..."

Read the full article at its source:


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