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Humanoid Upper Torso Complexity for Displaying Gestures

Author(s): Robert Richardson | David Devereux | Jennifer Burt | Paul Nutter

Journal: International Journal of Advanced Robotic Systems
ISSN 1729-8806

Volume: 9;
Issue: ;
Date: 2012;
Original page

Keywords: humanoid robot | kinematics | body language | emotion

Body language is an important part of human‐ to‐human communication; therefore body language in humanoid robots is very important for successful communication and social interaction with humans. The number of degrees of freedom (d.o.f) necessary to achieve realistic body language in robots has been investigated. Using animation, three robots were simulated performing body language gestures; the complex model was given 25 d.o.f, the simplified model 18 d.o.f and the basic model 10 d.o.f. A subjective survey was created online using these animations, to obtain people’s opinions on the realism of the gestures and to see if they could recognize the emotions portrayed. It was concluded that the basic system was the least realistic, complex system the most realistic, and the simplified system was only slightly less realistic than the human. Modular robotic joints were then fabricated so that the gestures could be implemented experimentally. The experimental results demonstrate that through simplification of the required degrees of freedom, the gestures can be experimentally reproduced.
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