Monday, July 21, 2014

The First Social Robot to Hit the Market, Jibo

Throughout time we have used robots to accomplish many different missions: sending them to space, using them within the military, efficiently running a manufacturing line, and more. Now, social robots are hitting the market, such as Jibo, the world's first family robot. 

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Jibo is a compact robot with a huge personality, designed by a pioneer of social robotics, Cynthia Breazeal. Similar to Virtual Personal Assistants (such as Siri and Google Now), Jibo can greet you and remind you of appointments throughout the day. More importantly, social robots (like Jibo) have been seen to have a greater impact on literacy and second language learning than standard computers. The interactive element of Jibo makes learning easier because of it companionship feel, unlike a regular application on a device (Meet Jibo: The World's First Family Robot).

Click here to watch an interview with Breazeal talking about her inspiration for Jibo and its different functions.

With robots gaining popularity, some people are concerned about robots replacing humans within jobs, and/or replacing human roles in general. As Breazeal said in her interview with Katie Couric, "It's about human empowerment." Artificial Intelligence (A.I.) is being used to augment human actions, not take over.  

How do you feel about a personal, social robot for your home? Would you buy one, why or why not?