We’ve seen a surge in humanoid robot research lately, and every now and then scientists and students devise something that catches our attention. The Dreamer ‘sociable’ humanoid head is a good example that has been turning a few heads, courtesy of the Human Centered Robotics Laboratory at the University of Texas at Austin.
They say that around 93 percent of communication occurs nonverbally, with eye movements playing a very important part in our body language and how others perceive us. Looking at the Dreamer robot, which incidentally was modeled with female anime characters in mind, one can’t help but perceive emotions communicated with the robot’s eye movements. This holds especially true if you’re an anime fan like me.
The goal behind the project is to give the robot a warm and sociable feel, as most other robots are perceived as lacking emotion which makes them come across as cold and quite intimidating. We are also told that the eye movement has been slowed down, and as a matter of fact, the robot is designed to mimic human eye movement, both in accuracy and speed. The robot’s face is also designed to give off a friendly and attractive look, with big eyes, a prominent forehead, the absence of a mouth and protuding glowing ears.
The whole display and the cute looks make the robot very huggable, and I wouldn’t be surprised if similar tech ended up in teddy bears and other children toys. Check out the video to see the robot in action and to know more about the tech behind it, though be warned – some of the eye movements and colors eerily reminded us of Stewie.