Laboratory for New Media 16th Exhibition
“Robot Chat Room”

Laboratory for New Media Permanent Exhibition periodically updates contents of exhibitions to introduce the various possibilities of expression provided by information science and technology.

You, alone, have slipped into a room where robots are chatting among themselves. Let's try to join in their conversation. Can you mingle in with them? Are you hesitant and abashed? Or do you feel strange and uncomfortable?
In the 16th exhibition “Robot Chat Room,” visitors can experience communicating with conversational robots. The exhibition is presented by the JST ERATO “ISHIGURO Symbiotic Human-Robot Interaction Project” they conduct research on natural dialogues between humans and robots, and they place emphasis on creating an adequate sense of conversation (the feeling that one is participating in the conversation) for humans. The observed experiences that people have in communicating with robots, as well as the feedback received, are utilized in research aimed at developing a society where humans can enjoy friendly relations with robots.

About Robot Chat Room

The two robots featured here are equipped with functions that enable them to converse and interact naturally with human beings. They are able to move their heads and various parts of their bodies freely, making it possible to distinguish clearly whom they are directing the conversation at. In addition, due to the small physical size of their bodies, they do not create an intimidating presence even when there is more than one of them. Hence, they are designed in a way that makes it easy for them to blend into society.
Such robots are expected to be used increasingly in everyday situations, such as the provision of information, communication support, and providing support for learning. To that end, it is necessary to develop applications that match the respective uses. This exhibition aims to contribute to such research.

Robots for researchers CommU: Communication Unity

Developed with the aim of conducting research on communication using robots. The CommU is able to move its eyes and eyelids freely, realizing an advanced level of interaction that engages movements in the line of vision as well as subtle behavior.

Universal robot Sota: Social Talker

Developed with the aim of popularization in ordinary homes. In addition to having a simpler mechanism than the CommU, it incorporates the design of an approachable and friendly character, produced by the robot’s creator Tomotaka Takahashi.

Term July 13 (Wed.), 2016 - October 24 (Mon.), 2016
  • Yuichiro Yoshikawa, Ph.D. (Eng.)
    Associate Professor, Graduate School of Engineering Science, Osaka University
    Project Coordinator and Group Leader of Autonomous Robot Research Group, JST ERATO ISHIGURO Symbiotic Human-Robot Interaction Project