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Humanoid robot to teach software class

Japanese students may soon welcome a 4-foot-tall humanoid robot that has been designed as an educational tool. The bot is based on ZMP's e-nuvo Humanoid platform.

Nippon Institute of Technology

Classrooms in Japan may soon welcome a new 4-foot-tall educational humanoid robot unveiled by Nippon Institute of Technology and other groups.

It will be used to teach software programming and hardware engineering to students, but will also be demonstrated in elementary schools and nursing homes. It will act as a "teacher" in class along with a human teacher.

As explained in Japanese in the video below, the kid-size bot doesn't have a name yet. With its boyish voice, the robot can be heard asking people to give it a "cool name." It then does some dancing and balancing on one leg.

But some details are available. It tips the scales at 33 pounds and has 21 degrees of mechanical freedom. It's equipped with sensing devices including a camera, accelerometers, and gyroscopes, and has a small projector in its head. It can be programmed with Microsoft Robotics Developer Studio.

The price tag is about $132,000, according to Robot Watch.

Its body was engineered by Tokyo robot firm ZMP, known for its small but stylish Nuvo bot. The underlying e-nuvo Humanoid platform is intended for education and research, and is priced around $77,000. The exterior was designed by Znug Design studio.

More photos at the Robot Watch page (in Japanese).

No word yet on how the robot will punish bad students.