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Robot interaction for kids

In this university course, we were helping a client who does research with robots for children. With a team of three, we set out to create a graphical interface to enable kids to control a small robot. We collaborated on all tasks within the team, but my main activities were the hardware prototype, networking, and assisting in the studies.

Movements you make with the controller are in real time replicated by the robot.

First multiple GUI designs were made. In the first user testing sessions with kids, it was found a tablet interface was too complex for them.

The initial interface on a tablet.

With permission of our client, we decided to completely re-think the interaction method. We came up with a type of interaction that is more intuitive: a physical representation of the robot, that can be moved around like a toy. The real robot mimics every move the kids show with the toy version. The physical prototype yielded better results.

Construction of the hardware prototype.