Meet The Robots That Will Soon Be Teaching Your Kids How To Write

03.07.15 3 years ago

Robots haven’t taken over the world just yet, but they’re certainly becoming more and more a part of our everyday lives. Just last month, Japan announced that it was building a hotel that would be completely staffed by mechanical humanoids. Now, researchers in Switzerland have developed something called the CoWriter project, which utilizes two-foot tall droids to teach children how to write.

Well, sort of. While the children believe they are learning from the friendly robots, in reality they actually are learning to write by teaching and correcting the robots. It’s little counterintuitive and sneaky, but somehow also makes sense and produces great results. Here’s how the project works:

Instead of the robots instructing the kids, however, the kids instruct the robots — who are programmed with progressive writing algorithms that mimic human learning.

It’s a kind of educational jujitsu move, of course, because the goal is to teach the kids without them even knowing it. The robots’ writing is reproduced on a tablet computer, which the kids can then correct using a stylus. The ‘bots draw from a vast database of handwriting samples that incorporate common errors for children in the specified learning range.

Ideally, these robots wouldn’t replace educators entirely; the learning-by-teaching CoWriter project is meant to be a supplementary learning tool. Of course, check back in the year 2050 and it might be a completely different story.

Below, watch a short video on the CoWriter project:

[Via Mashable]

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