“The Huggable: A Therapeutic Robotic Companion for Relational, Affective Touch” by Stiehl, Breazeal, Han, Lieberman, Maymin, et al. …

  • ©Walter Dan Stiehl, Cynthia Breazeal, Kuk-Hyun Han, Jeff Lieberman, Allan Maymin, Jonathan Salinas, Daniel Fuentes, Robert Toscano, Cheng Hau Tong, Aseem Kishore, Matt Berlin, Jesse Gray, and Levi Lalla

  • ©Walter Dan Stiehl, Cynthia Breazeal, Kuk-Hyun Han, Jeff Lieberman, Allan Maymin, Jonathan Salinas, Daniel Fuentes, Robert Toscano, Cheng Hau Tong, Aseem Kishore, Matt Berlin, Jesse Gray, and Levi Lalla


Description:


    Currently, companion animal therapy is used in hospitals, nursing homes, and other facilities to improve the lives of people. Unfortunately, it is not practiced in many facilities due to the fears of allergies, bites, or disease. Even in facilities that do allow this form of therapy it occurs for a short time each time as a schedule activity. These restrictions have created a new form of therapy where robotic companions are used either when the real animals are not available or as a complement to a current companion therapy program.

    The Huggable, shown in Figure 1, is a new type of robotic companion inspired by companion animal therapy with the goal of functioning as a team member that works with the staff of the facility and the resident to promote the overall health of the individual (Stiehl, Lieberman et al. 2005). This system consists of both the Huggable robot as well as a separate computer placed at the nurse’s station. The Huggable and the nurse’s station computer communicate via an 802.11g wireless connection.


Other Information:


    References

    Stiehl, W. D., J. Lieberman, et al. (2005). The Design of the Huggable: A Therapeutic Robotic Companion for Relational, Affective Touch. AAAI Fall Symposium on Caring Machines: AI in Eldercare, Washington, D.C.


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