Changing the Face of Education, Here and NAO.
According to inventor and artist Leonardo Da Vinci ‘Learning Never Exhausts the Mind’ and over the past decade here at SoftBank Robotics we have found that to be consistently true.
In 2004 Aldebaran Robotics (Now SoftBank Robotics) launched project NAO which over time has come to revolutionize the way humans and robots interact with each other. NAO is a 58cm tall humanoid robot that is continuously evolving to help support humans in all their endeavors.
NAO’s abilities range from facial recognition, learning from past conversations to automated movement. NAO has already shown his more advanced capabilities through concierging at hotels, aided researchers in over 70 different institutions.
Most recently, NAO has been put to use in multiple South Australian schools; there NAO supports teachers, challenges students and is changing the way they interact. Monica Williams, a researcher from The Association of Independent Schools of South Australia noted that “What surprised the director was the depth of the students’ understanding and that once the teachers opened up to working with the students on the robot they continually saw things that surprised all of us as to what students were capable of”. Additionally, these schools found that both boys and girls were equally captivated by NAO and even began learning how to code for NAO using Python, an industry standard. Similarly, with the help of Choreographe and multiple licenses provided for schools, students can work with a virtual NAO as they take turns working with the actual NAO which encourages each student to learn at their own pace.
NAO has also been hard at work in the special education field, supporting students in developing skills like turn taking, spontaneous communication and social interaction with NAO and others.
Through the years, NAO has proven that whether you are a teacher wanting to empower your students, a hotel in need of a concierge or a student who could use a helping hand, NAO will be there for you, with capabilities that surprise and engage people.
NAO is more than just a robot, NAO can connect with real people and has the ability to become a core part of a community. Like us, NAO will keep developing and learning and if his time in Australia shows us anything, it is that NAO’s mind is far from exhausted.