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Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Robobowl Winner 2011: Therapy Robot Popchilla from Interbots

Interbots Popchilla
The winner of the Robotbowl 2011 competition is Interbots, a (four-year-old) spin-off company out of Carnegie Mellon University’s Entertainment Technology Center (CMU-ETC). Interbots is specializes in the design and construction of custom interactive characters (both physical and virtual), control software, and interactive multimedia content.  The team’s winning design, “Popchilla,” is a toy robot designed to help children with autism.
According to Interbots CEO Seema Patel, recent research shows that autistic children have an easier time interacting with robots than with humans. Think of Popchilla as a technologically sophisticated puppet: Parents and therapists can speak through Popchilla remotely, allowing them to interact and guide children through activities.


RoboBowl – Healthcare and Quality of Life Robotics Ventures Competition. The competition is intended to find and foster start-up and early-stage companies seeking to develop “big idea” products and services that address unmet and under-served market needs in targeted industrial sectors.
RoboBowl is organized by the Innovation Accelerator (IA) and the Robotics Technology Consortium (RTC), two organizations attempting to promote American technological innovation. IA provides funding assistance for start-up and mid-stage technology ventures across many disciplines and applications. RTC is an industry group that advocates for robotics development for use by the Department of Defense and other government agencies.

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