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Kaspar the Robot to Get Artificial Skin - featured June 4, 2009

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Kaspar the Robot (Kinesics and Synchronization in Personal Assistant Robotics) is a child sized robot developed by Adaptive Systems Research Group from the University of Hertfordshire in the UK. He is designed to help autistic children interact with other people.

Kaspar has been around for a couple of years, but Kaspar's creators are beginning a three year project to fit him with artificial skin . This high tech "roboskin," developed by Dr. Daniel Plani will be embedded with tactile sensors that can provide feedback to the children as they interact with Kaspar.

According to the researchers this is the first time that this approach has been used in work with children with autism. The goal is to make the robot able to respond to different styles of how the children play with Kaspar in order to help the children to develop ‘socially appropriate’ playful interaction (e.g. not too aggressive) when interacting with the robot and other people.

Read the Article from Science

This Video is from a 2008 BBC Television Report that talks about the aim of the Kaspar Project. It does not discuss the Roboskin portion of the project but will give you a good feel of what Kaspar can do.

Tags: News of the Week Autism Newsletter June 2009