Monthly Archives: October 2012

Inversion effect in human robot interaction

We received some media attention for Jakub’s study on the inversion effect in human-robot interaction:

Building an off road car with LEGO Technic

It has long been a dream of mine to build a remote controlled LEGO car. LEGO has many Technic cars in their program that use the Power Functions to remote control certain functions, such as opening doors or lifting an arm. Power Functions use infrared light for communication between the sender and the receiver. In the past, LEGO also had remote controlled cars that use radio frequencies, which is much better, since it does not require a line of sight and has a much further reach.

Recently, LEGO released the 4×4 Crawler and it really triggered something inside of me. I ordered the set, but when it arrived I never put it together. I started to build my own cars right away. I looked for inspiration on the internet and found many great off road cars, trial trucks and multi purpose car technology. In particular the work Pawel “Sariel” Kmiec. Check out his book “The Unofficial LEGO Technic Builder’s Guide” or visit his website. LPE Power also has some wonderful instructions on how to build real car technology with LEGO. Continue reading

PhD Position: The influence of robots on the development of language

The HIT Lab NZ has an opening for a PhD in Human-Robot Interaction entitled: “The influence of robots on the development of language“.

The ‘Wordovators’ project is a three-year project funded by the John Templeton Foundation. The project will conduct large-scale experiments in the form of computerized word games.  These games will be designed to probe the factors underpinning word creation and creativity, and how these develop through the life-span. One strand of the project will probe particular issues surrounding interactions between people and humanoid Robots. How are new words created and adopted in contexts involving such interactions? This PhD position is for a highly motivated student to join the project team, and conduct work that explores the ways that robots might shape human languages. These studies will analyze the factors and processes that might contribute to the influence of robots on the vocabularies of English and of artificial languages in imaginary worlds. Continue reading