Sunday, April 3, 2011

How Do People Respond to Being Touched by a Robot?

How might people react if they were touched by a robot? Would they recoil, or would they take it in stride? In an initial study, researchers at the Georgia Institute of Technology found people generally had a positive response toward being touched by a robotic nurse, but that their perception of the robot's intent made a significant difference.

Charlie Kemp, assistant professor in the Wallace H. Coulter Department of Biomedical Engineering at Georgia Tech and Emory University, and Tiffany Chen, doctoral student at Tech, talk about their investigation that looks at how being attended by a robot can affect people's comfort level.

The research took place in Kemp's Healthcare Robotics Lab with the robot known as Cody. Cody is now sporting new Xbox 360 Kinect headgear, gear that he didn't have in the initial study.

Video: Rob Felt, David Terraso/Georgia Tech
Photos: Rob Felt/Georgia Tech

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