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EDUCATIONAL ROBOTICS

Technology evolves and advances faster then ever in all aspects of our society. Thus, it is important that the next generations of students learn as much as possible about emerging technology and stay competitive.

SPECS contributes to the education of the next genartions by combining platforms for training and outreach activities, facitlitating multidisciplinary education and innovation by sharing the value of convergent science, excellence and societal impact. We have developed a few Educational Robotics programs for students of primary and secondary school, as well as courses to train teachers and young adults that wish to learn. see also http://specs.upf.edu/teaching

NeuroRobotics program for seconday school students

In this program we use Mobile Robots build and customized to teach the following:

- Introduction to NeuroRobotics
- Reactive behaviors : Braitenberg vehicles, self-regulation and Allostatic Control
- Adaptive Behaviors: Motor control, learning and adaptive reflexes.
- Distributed Adaptive Control (DAC) architecture : translating brain structure to behavior.
- Contextual Behaviors: Localization and mapping from a neuroscience perspective.
- Practical case I: self-regulation and foraging.
¬-Practical case II: Making sense of the world, mapping the world to musical events.

Humanoid Robots:
-How to program simple behaviors: gestures and emotion expression
-Social coordination components of behaviour.
-A practical case: a robot coordination task.

Courses realized up to date:

Neuro-Robotics course for high school teachers (Fundació la Pedrera). We participated in two editions of the program “Professors i Ciència” 2013 and 2014 reaching a total of 24 teachers of different schools and with a highly successful application rate, more than 100.
• Workshop on robotics and performance arts at MUAD, Master of Digital Arts of UPF: 15 students participated.
Course on NeuroRobotics at the open doors of UPF, editions 2014, 2015
• Course on NeuroRobotics at the “Parc de Recerca Biomédica” (PRBB) edition 2013.
Escolab informative sessions for highschool students in UPF, editions 2010-2016: estimated participation 500 students.

Robotics for Kids 

Thanks to robotics we can study aspects of brain function, such as for instance learning and social behavior. We have educational programs were children get to know the world of robotics and learn how to program them. For this we use 3D printed robots, such as the balancing robot and CODIBOT made in SPECS, as well as the NAO robot.

Lear programming with a musical robot CodiBot

Through these programs children also learn and discover aspects of our own behavior. These programs are also part of research carried out by our group within the European projects EASEL and WYSIWYD.

Course on "Personalities" for Robots

In this course, participants will learn how to program a small humanoid robot and make it behave according to personalities expressingdifferent emotions. This course was offered in several occasions to children age 10-12. in collaboration with Cosmos Caixa and primary schools of Barcelona as well as the GirlsHack day event held at UPF Barcelona, 13th March 2016.
Supported by Eu project EASEL

Bringing robotics closer to culture and arts

Teatronika: 

Teatronika is a SPECS, UPF project realized by Dr. Martí Sánchez-Fibla investigating the different roles of robotics in culture and arts. The main objective is to research the limits of state of the art robotics as the only constituent and main driving role of performing arts pieces, leaving humans out of the scene. Teatronika organized a short script contest for 4 robots together with Radio3  and FECYT (Fundación Española para la Ciencia y la Tecnologia). A jury, including among others Miquel Barceló (expert in Science Fiction) and Ramon Lopez de Mantaras (Director of the Artificial Intelligence Institute), chose 10 scripts among the 120 received. Four of the winning scripts were then realized as short theatrical pieces with real robots in the Center of Contemporary Culture of Barcelona (CCCB). see some pictures HERE

Shows up to date:
• Digital Arts Master (MUAD, UPF) student presentation: 30 of June 2015 Phonos, sala Polivalente UPF
• Robot Music Control : 18-19 June2015  Sonar 2015 during Music Hack Day
• Teatronika event: 29 November 2015 : Centro de Cultura Contemporánea de Barcelona : CCCB
• UPF Christmas event: 21 December 2015 : Sala Polivalente, UPF