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The robot in the kitchen: The cultural politics of care-work and the development of in-home assistive technology

This paper considers two trends at opposite ends of the new economy: low-paid in-home care work, and the development of high-tech “social” robots. At present, the work of caring for the elderly, disabled, and convalescents is done primarily by women (disproportionately women of color) in the space of the home (Pratt, 1999). Meanwhile, in robotics…

Seeing is comforting: Effects of teleoperator visibility in robot-mediated health care

Teleoperated robots can be used to provide medical care to patients in infectious disease outbreaks, alleviating workers from being in dangerous infectious zones longer than absolutely needed. Nevertheless, patients' reactions to this technology have not been tested. We test three hypotheses related to patients' comfort and trust of the operator and robot in a simulated…

Robot carers, ethics, and older people

This paper offers an ethical framework for the development of robots as home companions that are intended to address the isolation and reduced physical functioning of frail older people with capacity, especially those living alone in a non-institutional setting. Our ethical framework gives autonomy priority in a list of purposes served by assistive technology in…

Survey of social robots in Thailand

This paper attempts to present the current information related to the development of social robots in Thailand from various sources including the news media and academic publications in recent years. The state of development of socially interactive robot in Thailand reflects the acceptance and the needs of robotic technology in Thai society.

A Robotic Coach Architecture for Elder Care (ROCARE) Based on Multi-user Engagement Models

The aging population with its concomitant medical conditions, physical and cognitive impairments, at a time of strained resources, establishes the urgent need to explore advanced technologies that may enhance function and quality of life. Recently, robotic technology, especially socially assistive robotics has been investigated to address the physical, cognitive, and social needs of older adults.…

Developing a healthcare robot with personalized behaviors and social skills for the elderly

This paper describes research towards a general framework for a behavior control architecture that will provide customized interaction between the robot and an elderly individual suffering from mild cognitive impairment (MCI). This framework will enable the robot to learn from past events and to adapt its behavior to the specific needs of the person that…

Teach Me Show Me End-User Personalization of a Smart Home and Companion Robot

Care issues and costs associated with an increasing elderly population are becoming a major concern for many countries. The use of assistive robots in “smart-home” environments has been suggested as a possible partial solution to these concerns. A challenge is the personalization of the robot to meet the changing needs of the elderly person over…

Design and Evaluation of a Touch-Centered Calming Interaction with a Social Robot

With advances in sensor and actuator design, intelligent computing techniques and personal care robotics, today's robots hold promise as fully interactive, therapeutic human companions. To achieve this ambitious goal, key interaction components must be identified and then systematically designed and evaluated. Based on successes of human-animal therapy, we propose affective touch as one such component.…

Lessons learned from the deployment of a long-term autonomous robot as companion in physical therapy for older adults with dementia a mixed methods study

The eldercare sector is a promising deployment area for robotics where robots can support staff and help to bridge the predicted staff-shortage. A requirement analysis showed that one field of robot-deployment could be supporting physical therapy of older adults with advanced dementia. To explore this possibility, a long-term autonomous robot was deployed as a walking…

Robots against infectious diseases

Robots can play an integral role in the fight against infectious diseases. Robots, unlike humans, cannot catch infectious diseases; unlike vaccines, they are agnostic to specific infectious agents; unlike antibiotics, they do not contribute to medically-resistant strains. Despite these benefits, there remain enormous technical, cultural, and social-psychological challenges to successfully deploy robots in the fight…

Study on transition of elderly people’s reactions in robot therapy

Most elderly people staying in nursing homes have dementia, and various kinds of recreational programs are provided in order to prevent or ameliorate this problem. Robot therapy is a recreational program that has recently been introduced in some nursing homes. However, the effects of robot therapy are difficult to evaluate. In this study, we identified…

Surgical robotics. Born in space

With the introduction of telerobotic systems, it has become possible for surgeons to perform medical operations at greater physical distances from their patients. Whether in an adjacent room or on another continent, these systems enable greater flexibility in mitigating adverse surgical conditions. These ideas originally came from the space research, where further needs emerged to…