Human-Centered Robotics project and teaching @ TUT

Hey there!

How about a short physical exercise or walking meeting with me? Let’s do it!

We have started a new project around Human-Centered Robotics and UX in Robotics and you can imagine that we are very excited about it 🙂 The goal of the project is to develop competences of TUT and TIE lab on the area of designing robotic systems for the use of human beings, and build strong connections, understanding and cooperation between the competences from the technological side and human-centered design side (inside TUT labs and outside).

During this year, we will teach a completely new course called “UX in Robotics” on the fourth period (you can still enroll :). This new course covers the important aspects of user experience in human-robot interaction and gives students opportunities to apply this knowledge in robotics design. Students will get to know the current research in human-robot interaction, including collaborative robots, social and service robots, persuasive robots and cross-cultural aspects in HRI. The course includes practical user experience and interaction design assignments related to the aforementioned topics. We will also have a visiting lecture about collaborative robots given by Dr. Roel Pieters from TUT RoboLab.

We already arranged a doctoral seminar on Perspectives of Human-Robot Interaction – Social Robots in December 2017. It was a succesful day with invited speakers and hands on concepting work about the the social robotics. The students also had a possibility to familiarize and interact with Pepper and Nao.

From the cultural perspective, it is very interesting to observe for example the distances that people from different cultures prefer when interacting with the social robots, as well as do they approach robots independently or in group. The picture was taken in the seminar on Perspectives of Human-Robot Interaction, December 2017.

During this year, there will also be 2-3 diploma thesis workers doing interesting studies around the topic and working with our social robots Pepper and Nao. Together with students we will do user trials and studies with the robots in the field settings. Our topics include (but are not limited to), e.g. customer service, rehabilitation, learning, cross-cultural factors in HRI and robotic persuasion in the office. Our ways of working are very iterative, agile and flexible – as we learn, then we apply. And we will also have fun, definitely 🙂

The human-centered design and UX research is needed before these guys are released from the cage. The picture was taken in TUT Robolab.

Let’s talk more about it!

Cheers; Aino, Kirsikka, Aparajita, Aleksi, Pepper & Nao – The Human-Centered Robotics Team

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