Robot Emotive Expression (MDS project at MIT)
The Mobile Dexterous Social Robot (MDS) project out of MIT has developed the above video showing its latest model. I have seen earlier research on robotic facial mechanisms, and this project is an extension of that research. Note that although we clearly know this is an artifact, it automatically plays on our lower level facial processing abilities for its uncanny effect. Part of its allure is that it changes "expressions" at a human-like pace too. Thus, our brains are tricked into imparting emotive content to the basic movement of the parts of the robot's "face".
1. "The speaking robot @ MIT" YouTube Dec. 6, 2006. (Accessed Oct. 4, 2008) - This video is interesting because of the level of emotion and communication which is automatically imparted upon the (more primitive, but related) robot by museum visitors.
2. "Official MDS Robot Video - First Test of Expressive Ability" YouTube April 15, 2008. (Accessed Oct. 4, 2008) -- Another, but more corporate-like video showing similar abilities of the MDS robot.