Korean Educational Robotic Head
It seems that only Japan is keen to populate the planet with androids. A Korean robotics center recently revealed a robotic head that will most probably serve an educational purpose.
The Center for Intelligent Robotics, which created this particular robotic head, is part of KIST (Korea Institute of Science and Technology). Apparently, this is the same robotics center that created Kibo 2.0, a shy android who during its launched waved at the people who attended Robot World 2011.
Judging from the above video, it would seem that the robotic head is meant to entertain kids. Since I do not speak Korean and there is no description for the video, I simply have no idea what the song is about, so I will assume that the robotic head is targeted towards kindergartens and primary schools. The only moving parts of the head are the lips and it seems that the engineers who created it did a very good job with synchronizing the lips to the song. Basically, it looks like the head is singing it. A bit more interaction would have been nice, though. For example, it would have been better if the eyes blinked to the rhythm of the music, because at this stage, the lips would look as good when attached to a piece of paper on which a portrait is drawn.
The design of this robotic head is rather dull, so it would be safe to assume that the engineers focused more on its functionality than on its physical aspect. However, I’m not sure how kids would react when seeing it. Would people agree at some point to replace current educators and teachers with robotic heads or even androids? I can see both upsides and disadvantages in this. On the downside, the personal teach that is nowadays present in education would disappear, but on the bright side of things, the new teachers would be a lot more objective.