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Cnr-Icar: “100 Italian Robotics & Automation Stories” By Symbola Enel

The fourth Made in Italy Innovation Report contains 100 stories. Large centres of international excellence, businesses, and simply a passion for robotics of the new generations. The Cnr in these stories was represented by Icar with this story:

Big eyes and a gentle expression: that’s enough for people to fearlessly approach Pepper, a commercial robot, which CNR-ICAR (Istituto di Calcolo e Reti ad Alte Prestazioni) uses to develop research on cognitive robotics. Its artificial intelligence is, of course, the work of researchers at the institute based in Rende (CS), Naples and Palermo. CNR-ICAR deals with Knowledge Engineering and therefore also with robotic systems and their interaction with man.The researchers study methodologies to make the man – robot interactions more “natural” and to make robots able to perceive the world around them.

The thousands of pieces of information that the robot’s sensors receive every second from the environment are analysed and processed into sensations (which they call “roboceptions“) to obtain a sort of artificial somatosensory system. This system allows robots to have a perception of themselves and their relationship with reality. It is not enough to understand human language to establish a connection; other factors such as emotions and the ability to interpret them must come into play. CNR-ICAR uses Pepper to test these studies and verify their effectiveness through applications involving common users, especially children, who are very empathetic towards the young humanoid.


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