Are Robots The New Vampires? - Heather Knight - H+ Summit @ Harvard


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Heather Knight
CTO, Humanity+
Why Robots Need to Spend More Time in the Limelight: People Tracking and Artificial Personality

In order to develop the personal robots of the future, it will be essential to develop systems of social intelligence for robots. An important factor is this transition will be to base robot intelligence on real human situations and scenarios, which requires us to immediately move user studies out of sterile laboratories and into the general public. To this end, I have created a company called Marilyn Monrobot, which is innovating charismatic machine performances. In one example, robot and human actors will perform the same script and basic set of actions, but each time vary the emotional and social content of those interactions. This variation will be based on realtime and post-processed audience data and will allow the general public to craft and home robot personalities. The ultimate goal is a system that allows for both planned and impromptu performances, and a natural extension of the work would be to take down the so-called 'third wall' of the stage and bring the human-robot performances directly into a mass of people, much like spoken word in a city crowd.

Heather Knight runs Marilyn Monrobot Labs in NYC, which creates socially intelligent robot performances, sensor design and electronic art. Her previous work includes: robotics and instrumentation at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, interactive installations with Syyn Labs, electrical engineering at Aldebaran Robotics, and she is an alumnus from the Personal Robots Group at the MIT Media Lab. Her installations have been featured at the Smithsonian-Cooper Hewitt Design Museum, LACMA, SIGGRAPH, Mindshare LA, TEDxUSC and the Fortezza da Basso in Florence, Italy. She has two degrees from MIT in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science and a minor in Mechanical Engineering and will begin her PhD at Carnegie Mellon’s Robotics Institute in Fall 2010.

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Are Robots The New Vampires? - Heather Knight - H+ Summit @ Harvard

  1. 1. Are Robots the New Vampires? . Why Robots should spend more time in the Limelight TwitterID: Website: HeatherKnight
  2. 2. My Bias toward Robots MIT Personal Robots Group Aldebaran Robotics NASA / Jet Propulsion Lab Syynlabs / Carnegie Mellon 6/11/10
  3. 3. Recognizing Human Gestures The Sensate Bear, MIT Media Lab 6/11/10
  4. 4. OK GO Rube Goldberg Machine 6/11/10
  5. 5. Robots Perform Shakespeare AirRobot at Texas A&M University 6/11/10
  6. 6. Robots with Volition Osaka University in Japan 6/11/10
  7. 7. Advantages of Robot Theater for Personal Robots Development Focus on Body Language Repeatability Massed Data for Learning As far away from the engineers as possible... ;-) 6/11/10
  8. 8. Collaborate Robonaut / Astronomy Magazine 6/11/10
  9. 9. Communicate Kismet, Cynthia Breazeal 6/11/10
  10. 10. Integrate Nao, Aldebaran Robotics Roboreceptionist, CMU 6/11/10
  11. 11. Play Mindshare LA 6/11/10
  12. 12. Tools Available to us (as robots) Human Behavior Tracking Expression Dialog Body Language Behavior Systems Task-based interactions Gaze Machine Ethics Artif cial Personality i 6/11/10
  13. 13. GameBot @ CMU Project begun by Reid Simmons at CMU Robotics Institute 6/11/10
  14. 14. Wiring the Audience Rocky Horror Picture Show 6/11/10
  15. 15. Comparing Cultures 6/11/10
  16. 16. Which is cuter? Vampire Bunny Robot Bunny 6/11/10
  17. 17. STAY TUNED!! NYC Makerfaire September 25 Website: TwitterID: heatherknight 6/11/10