The Honda Research Institute gives an in-depth look at the design of their newest social robot prototype
Social robots have had it tough recently. There are lots of reasons for this, but a big part of it is that it’s a challenge to develop a social robot that’s able to spark long-term user interest without driving initial expectations impractically high. This isn’t just the case for commercial robots—social robots designed for long-term user interaction studies have the same sorts of issues. The Honda Research Institute is well aware of how tricky this is, and researchers there have been working on the design of a prototype social robot that achieves a “balance between human expectation, surface appearance, physical affordance, and robot functionality.” It’s called Haru, and Honda Research has provided a fascinating and detailed look into how they came up with its design.
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