Project Pal is a big project which focuses on developing a social robot: a companion for children with diabetes.
Diabetes is a very complex and chronic disease and in order to stay healthy it has to be taken care of every day. This is difficult to understand for children: although they can be helped by their parents, they must learn how to do it themselves as well.
This is where Pal comes in. Together with the robot the children play engaging and interesting educational games, about for example food. The robot makes mistakes and learns as well while playing these games, so it truly becomes a peer for the child. Step by step the child and the robot grow together and share the experience.
The researchers follow the child's progress in an application for two weeks: after these two weeks the children were already very enthusiastic. The next goal is to extend the project by building an avatar that can be used for nine months: this way the children and the robot can really build up a relationship and create an emotional connection. Hopefully in the future the children will then be at a more stable leven and show healthier behaviour.
Faculty: Electrical Engineering, Computer Science & Engineering
Researcher: Prof. Dr. Mark Neerincx
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