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Tech Robot Baby Learns How to Express Emotion (Video)

Robot Baby Learns How to Express Emotion (Video)

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First Posted: Jan 17, 2013 11:42 AM EST
Robot
With the help of small explosions produced by a mix of methane and oxygen, researchers at Harvard have designed a soft robot (NOT PICTURED) that can leap as high as a food in the air. (Photo : Flickr)

And you thought Chucky the killer doll was creepy. A new, life-like robot is being used by researchers to gain insight into how a baby learns. Named Diego-san by its creators, the robot measures four feet, three inches tall, and has over 60 moving parts, including a pair of high-resolution cameras for eyes.

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Javier Movellan and his team at the Machine Perception Laboratory at the University of California collaborated with Japanese robotics manufacturer Kokoro Company to create the robot. It can mimic various facial expressions, including surprise, happiness, and sadness. Eerily life-life, Diego-san heralds the next step in the development of "emotionally relevant" robots.

Currently, Movellan and his colleagues are developing the software to allow Diego-san to learn and interact with people. The software should theoretically allow them to use computational study to research infant development. The researchers hope, though, that their project could provide insights in the study of autism and William's syndrome.

Interested in seeing Diego-san in action? Check out the video below.

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