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• Buddy & FR-i

Buddy-KIST

We looked at KIST’s expressive robot head, FR-i, in an earlier post. This is a video showcasing an earlier version of the robot head, Buddy 1.5.  While not quite as interactive as MIT’s Kismet, the robot can make a variety of facial expressions and maintain eye contact by tracking a person’s head movement.  Additionally, it can react to loud noises and objects in close proximity. FR-i improves on Buddy by visually tracking specific facial features, such as a person’s eyes, brows, and lips, which it uses to understand a person’s expression and mirror it.

If humanoid robots are going to interact with people, an expressive face will play an important role in their communication, which is why this project was started.  The researchers say that the robot could also be used in social interaction studies, for example with autistic children. Could KIST’s next humanoid robot have an expressive face similar to Waseda University’s Kobian?  Video of the original Buddy robot and images of FR-i follow after the break.

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