Developing the IROMEC Robot for Play: Results From the First Experimental TrialsBy Besio, Serenella; Potenza, Maria Francesca; Kronreif, Gernot; Assistive Technology From Adapted Equipment to Inclusive Environments: AAATE 2009 Conference Proceedings, pp. 159-164
Publication Date: 2009
Article outlines the development and initial trials of an interactive robotic system that can encourage playful activities in children who are unable to play due to disabilities such as severe motor impairment, mild cognitive impairment, and autism. The robot is part of the European Union funded Interactive RObotic social MEdiators as Companions (IROMEC) project. An initial three-month evaluation at the University of Aosta in Italy of 3 potential robots involved small groups of children aged 3 to 15 years with severe motor impairments. The robots, AIBO, a puppy made by Sony; a two-wheeled prototype developed by a project partner; and the first IROMEC prototype, were tested in play scenarios including turn taking, imitation, moving the robot by making sounds, and blocking the robot from moving. Of the three robots, participants showed a definite preference for AIBO. Based on trial findings, recommendations for developing IROMEC into an effective play companion were offered, including the choice of settings familiar to the child; a limit to the number of people present during trials; consideration of trials including peers without disabilities together with the children with disabilities; including sample characteristics such as chronological and mental age, gender, and presence of other disabilities; and a limit of 60 minutes for each trial session.
Published by: IOS Press (Website:http://www.iospress.nl)
Association for the Advancement of Assistive Technology in Europe (AAATE) (Web Site: http://www.aaate.net )
Link to text: http://www.booksonline.iospress.nl/Content/View.aspx?piid=13362
This publication is included in the library of the National Rehabilitation Information Center (NARIC), accession number R09056