|Face to Face With Sweden's Social Robot|
|Tuesday, 03 December 2013 17:19|
Human interaction with robots is about to get a little more personal. Meet "Furhat," the face of tomorrow's interactive technology.
An increasingly important -- and sometimes frustrating -- part of daily life is dealing with so-called "user interfaces." Whether it's a smartphone or an airport check-in system, the user's ability to get what they want out of the machine relies on their own adaptability to unfamiliar interfaces.
But what if you could simply talk to a machine the way you talk to a human being? And what if the machine could also ask you questions, or even address two different people at once?
These kinds of interactive abilities are being developed at KTH Royal Institute of Technology with the help of an award-winning robotic head that takes its name from the fur hat it wears.
With a computer-generated, animated face that is rear-projected on a 3D mask, Furhat is actually a platform for testing various interactive technologies, such as speech synthesis, speech recognition and eye-tracking. The robot can conduct conversations with multiple people, turning its head and looking each person straight in the eye, while moving its animated lips in synch with its words.