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  • What's new in my robots pages?

    Wednesday, apr. 6th, 2005 :
    Updated the Toys page with pictures and details for a few new toys.

    Sunday, feb. 6th, 2005 :
    Updated the Fujitsu, Nec and Promet pages with pictures, text and a video.

    Wednesday, sept. 8th, 2004 : BN-1
    Added a Bandai BN-1 page to my real robots collection. Also updated the Wonderborg page a bit.

    This feature will soon be available

    NEC R-100 and PAPERO Robots
    This page is under construction....

    Applying a different approach than some better known projects as the Honda Asimo or the Sony Qrio, Nec robots development program does not focus on impressive life-like mechanics. The R-100 (right) and it's younger brother PaPeRo (below) thus resemble more a modern R2-D2 version than sci-fi humanoids.
    So, if Nec has chosen not to emphasis the mechanical abilities in this platform, they've chosen to work more on human-robot interaction and embedded Artificial Intelligence instead.

    The R-100 prototype was developped in 1997. It's successor, the PaPeRo (for Partner-type Personal Robot) adopted a very similar design when presented in 2001. It was yet a little more compact and it's embedded electronics was of course enhanced.

    So what is PaPeRo about? I think that Nec would like us to think of PaPeRo as some kind of mix between an (artificially) intelligent pet and a not-human family member. The PaPeRo has been created with "eyes" and "ears" and knows how to use it to recognize people's face, as well as to understand a variety of questions and requests.
    PaPeRo is also able to access the internet, check for e-mails or search for information. It will learn from people's requests what everyone prefers and act according to this knowledge when recognizing a family member.

    As of september 2004, Nec has no announced plans of releasing the PaPeRo to the consumer Market. They made it available to an industrial/research audience, though, as a research platform for artificial intelligence and man-machine interaction.
    Working on robot-human interaction is indeed Nec motivation : PaPeRo official page (below) mentions that a lot has been learned when presenting the robot to the public during several exhibitions. These interactions were nothing that could have been learned in the confined development labs environment, and helped a lot enhancing the robot programs and behavior.
    My preliminary final word for this preliminary page will be that, even if non-humanoid, this robots includes lots of details that are actually intended to make it "life like" in more than just an artificial intelligence way. Keep in mind that it's head will move according to external stimulations, for instance. The robot will also "look" and "listen", just as it's face suggests it is able to. All of this, added to it's artificial intelligence and human-interaction systems makes it totally eligible to my "somehow humanoid" robots list!

    Videos : NEC Papero presentation video

    2000KB : a very interesting, yet low-res, promotional PaPeRo video from Nec. I've saved this video from the Nec website and my intention is not to break anyone's copyright here. If someone from Nec thinks this video should not be here, please let me know and i'd remove it from my site.

    Related links :
    PaPeRo official news page (english)
    Official PaPeRo presentation page (english)