Robin, an Autonomous Social Robot for Diabetic Children
Robin is a cognitively and motivationally autonomous affective robot toddler with "robot diabetes" that we have developed to support perceived self-efficacy and emotional wellbeing in children with diabetes by providing them with positive mastery educational experiences of diabetes management in a playful but realistic and natural interaction context. Underlying the design of Robin is an "Embodied Artificial Intelligence" approach to robotics. In this talk we discuss the rationale behind the design of Robin to meet the needs of our intended end users (both children and medical staff), and how "New AI" provides a suitable approach to developing a friendly companion that fulfills the educational, therapeutic and affective requirements of the children, beyond other approaches commonly used in educational and assistive robotics for child-robot interaction. Finally, we will illustrate with some examples and video material how our approach permitted our robot to interact with and provide suitable experiences of diabetes management to children with very different social interaction styles.
Dr Matthew Lewis is a Senior Research Fellow at the University of Hertfordshire, working in the Embodied Emotion, Cognition and (Inter-)Action Lab. He holds a BA in Mathematics from Cambridge University, and an MSc and PhD in Mathematics from Imperial College, London. Before returning to academia, he worked professionally as a Software Engineer on embedded systems. His research interests include Embodied Artificial Intelligence, assistive social robots, and artificial emotions for decision-making in robots.