Title

An Entertaining Robot Prototype for Pets

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

2010

Publication Source

Journal of Engineering, Design and Technology

Volume

8

Issue

2

Inclusive pages

189-205

DOI

http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/17260531011062555

Publisher

Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Place of Publication

United Kingdom

ISBN/ISSN

1726-0531

Peer Reviewed

yes

Abstract

Purpose
– Robots come in a variety of shapes and sizes, from manipulators in the industrial assembly line, to house cleaners, and to carebots of the elderly and sick. In recent years entertaining robots have been developed to engage adults and children into playing and learning. There are however no robots that have been specifically designed to entertain pets. The purpose of this paper is to present a prototype developed to engage pets into outdoor playing.
Design/methodology/approach
– A prototype that can engage a dog or a cat into playing was designed, built, and tested by a group of senior students. The enclosure of the prototype has the shape of a round shell. Within this shell there is a sensor interfacing unit, which can interpret sounds generated by the animals, and a light and sound system designed to interact with the animals.
Findings
– The testing results showed that the prototype was able to fulfill requirements for outdoor playing, such as being waterproof and able to travel through grass. Testing of the individual sensor interfacing circuits demonstrated the interactive capability. Dogs were chosen to be the subjects to be entertained. However, it is envisioned that a smaller version of this prototype can be suitable for cats.
Originality/value
– This is the first prototype that explores ways to entertain pets when their human owners are absent or busy. The prototype developed is a good start for any intelligent robotic systems specifically designed to entertain pets.

Keywords

Robotics, Entertainment, Animals, Intelligent sensors

Disciplines

Engineering

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