Innovation That Matters

Social robot

Social robot helps reduce anxiety for children with autism

Health & Wellbeing

A new social robot has been designed to reduce symptoms of anxiety and increase attention levels in kids with autism.

At Springwise, we pride ourselves on our drive for positive change. We often feature innovations that seek to make a strong impact on the world for the better. LuxAI, a spin-off from the University of Luxembourg, develops interactive social robots using artificial intelligence. Their new robot – QTrobot – teaches skills to kids with autism. QTrobot aims to improve the level of attention and engagement of kids with autism, as well as decreasing anxiety and disruptive behaviours.

QTrobot is a humanoid robot with a liquid-crystal display (LCD) face and robotic arms. An expressive face and moving arms enable the social robot to imitate emotions. In this way, QTrobot can therefore help kids with autism develop their emotion recognition skills. Children can use the accompanying child tablet interface to interact with QTrobot and receive visual feedback.

QTrobot also comes with a user-friendly graphical interface which is compatible with Android. This allows autism professionals to run sessions using the social robot and design their own curriculums. In addition, QTrobot contains pre-programmed educational curriculums which focus on building different skills to help kids with autism become more independent and social. These have been developed from many years of research on autism training. LuxAI will be showcasing their findings at the RO-MAN 2018 conference taking place at the end of August in China.

Here at Springwise, we have published many innovations that help to diagnose and support people with autism. For example, in the US, researchers developed AI glasses to assist children with autism read facial expressions. It uses machine learning and social cues to help the wearer interact with other people. Another example is a research project in the UK, funded by the EU Comission, which aims to identify the parts of the brain associated with social cues using VR and brain scans.




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