Jibo Is the First Family Robot [Video]

Jibo Family Robot

Jibo is the world’s first robot designed to be used by today’s digitally advanced family. While the new device is no Rosie the Robot Maid, from the cartoon television series, The Jetsons, and will not do laundry or cook. The design is intended to interact and assist with daily life tasks of the entire family. Dr. Cynthia Breazeal, the mind behind this social robot, has launched a crowdfunding campaign to bring the first Jibos into homes as early as December 2015.

Dr. Breazeal believes that Jibo can be an interactive companion for every member of a household. The little droid, standing less that a foot high and weighing only six pounds, will not move around the house on its own, but is small enough to be placed almost anywhere and bring personality, intelligence and assistance to day-to-day tasks. Jibo is a first step for Dr. Breazeal, the director of the Personal Robots Group at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, toward creating a home environment with a more humanized technology.

Jibo Is the First Family Robot [Video]Jibo combines advanced technological design with unique software that gives it the ability to recognize different voices and faces. The little droid will turn and tilt its head toward users during interactions with people, and respond with a pleasant, non-mechanical sounding voice. After being brought into a household for the first time, the little robot will immediately begin to learn about the people around it. As it learns, Jibo will begin to tailor its interactions to each specific person individually.

Adding connectivity to both Apple and Android devices, allows users to send an receive messages to different family members through Jobi without worrying that the wrong person will see or hear the message. Jobi will recognize the person for whom each message is intended whenever that individual enters the room.

The robot displays almost human reactions at times. When it is not included in the conversation, the droid will perk up and listen for a command when the device’s sound sensors pick up its name, then return to standby if no command is given. Home automation is possible by connecting compatible household devices to the unit. Jibo will automatically turn lights on, retrieve voice mail and messages, and will even order food online for delivery. These features merely scratch the surface of this little robots potential.

As the first robot for intended for families, Jibo displays talents as a photographer, a storyteller, and a telecommunications device. As a photographer, software allows Jibo to recognize when someone is posing for a picture and, during group shots, will wait until everyone in the photo is looking at and smiling before taking a photo. The image will not be captured until everyone is in focus. The droid uses voice commands to ensure everyone is in the photo and looking at the camera. This allows the people who are never in the photos, because they are the ones taking the pictures, to actually be in the photos. As a storyteller, Jibo interacts with children and involve them with books through the use of graphics, movement and sounds to keep the youngsters engaged.

On the telecommunications side, Jibo shows groundbreaking potential. Its video communications are integrated with a “see and track” camera that enables the device to show callers on the other side of a video call the people who are in the room with it when they speak. Jibo will also show its owners the video from the caller’s side on its own built-in video screen and stereo speaker system.

With the telecommunications feature and storytelling abilities, Jibo could become the perfect baby monitor, watching over children and alerting parents with video messages sent to their smart devices if a child awakens or becomes fretful. Beyond baby monitoring, the robot also promises relief for households with elderly family members who need different types of assistance by discretely keeping its robotic eyes on them and alerting other family members if assistance is needed.

Jibo may look more like a character from a Disney movie than a useful family robot. However, the demonstrations by Dr. Breazeal shows how this little technological assistant can simplify everyday tasks, enhance quality of life and become the first real mechanical family member. With the potential for connecting with devices throughout the home, like lights, HVAC systems, televisions and more, this robot will grow upon its owners, eventually becoming an essential necessity in the well-equipped home.

By Carl Auer

Sources:
Official Jibo Press Release
re/code
Mashable
Jibo Official Website

One Response to "Jibo Is the First Family Robot [Video]"

  1. Michael Kimbley   October 13, 2014 at 8:13 am

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