Let me teach you, so I learn

Nao robot attempting to write a word. Credit: EPFL

Just two days ago I reported of new ways to teach a robot. Now I stumbled onto a news from EPFL where they invented a process to help kids learn to write by teaching a robot ... to write!

It is well known that if you are trying to teach to someone something the process leads you to a better understanding of the topic. I have first hand experience on this as I write these posts every day. What I do is to capture a news and then I start to think how it would be best explained to people that not necessarily have a grasp in that field. This leads me to a much better understanding of the news itself. Same goes when I have to give a lecture. It all starts from something I already know but the very effort of preparing materials to teach someone else makes my though and understanding more crisp.

Researchers at the EPFL (Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne) are using a small and cute humanoid robot, NAO, that pretends it doesn't know how to write or has a very poor writing skill. The kid gets engaged in teaching the robot how to write. A software in the robot makes it a slow learner, forcing the kid to repeat its lessons and find alternative ways to teach.  This process strengthen the kid writing ability.

The software is actually so smart that can detect the improvement in the kid's writing ability and adjust the robot reaction to that.

Quite cute!

Author - Roberto Saracco

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