M3-neony has been developed to research the development of fine motor skills like crawling. In particular, it is hoped that M3-neony will help elucidate the processes by which human beings develop their own physical skills from earliest childhood. Remarkably, it weighs just 7.7 pounds, about the same as a human newborn.
M3-synchy is used to understand verbal and non-verbal communication, primarily with its expressive face and arm gestures.
The main focus is on facial expressions and arm gestures, so it is an upper body robot only, with 17 DOF (2 eyes x3, neck x3, waist x2, 2 arms x3), measuring 30cm (12″) tall and weighing 2.5kg (5.5 lbs). The head is equipped with a single wide-angle lens CCD camera, two microphones, a speaker, and 15 LEDs which cause the robot to blush bright red. Combined with object recognition, speech recognition, and speech synthesis, the robot will be able to communicate in a variety of ways.
Take a look at this short video of the robot babies in action:
I don't think I can specifically think of a robot baby in science fiction. A small child, though, you can find in Brian Aldiss' 1967 short story Supertoys Last All Summer Long.
Via ; thanks to the anonymous reader who suggested it.
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