Asimo the robot makes new friends as researchers seek feedback from public

LINZ, Austria (AP) — Asimo the robot is making new friends in Austria.

Researchers are seeking feedback from visitors of a technology fair to help them make Asimo, Honda's battery-operated robot that looks like a 4-foot (1.2-meter) child in a spacesuit, more communicative.

Through an interactive game with volunteers, they're trying to understand if Asimo's gestures — such as those conveying happiness or inviting people to come play — make sense to humans.

William de Braekeleer, corporate communications manager at Honda Motor Europe, says the aim is to make Asimo's interaction with people as "harmonious" as possible.

Asimo's skills are already impressive. Not only can it run, walk on uneven slopes and respond to simple voice commands, it can also recognize faces with its camera eyes.

Honda has been working on robots since 1986.

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Online:

http://www.world.honda.com/ASIMO/

http://www.aec.at/index_de.php