MIT Media Lab


Studying at the MIT Media Lab

The MIT Media Lab is a very interesting place for those who are not familiar. It is a highly technical department on the MIT campus, but is also famous for being a place where many different disciplines mix. Many technical innovations now accepted as common were pioneered at the Lab including touchscreens, e-Ink, GPS, and wearables.

In 2010 I completed a masters degree in Media Arts and Sciences in the Personal Robotics Group at the Media Lab. My advisers included Cynthia Breazeal, Mitchel Resnick, and Edith Ackermann. My work focused on exploring how children interact with the robots at different ages through a number of studies.

To do this, I made a number of custom robots, each with a different set of abilities. Some wireless and remote control, others that could be dressed like Mr, Potato Head. These were used in formal and informal studies to evaluate how children perceive the robots at different ages. Long term uses for such robots include education and therapy.

I presented findings at events such as IDC (Interaction Design for Children) and the Future of Health Summit. I also collaborated with toy designers from Hasbro and animators from Pixar, who were instrumental in distilling the core elements of expression robots are capable of. These lessons were presented in Interaction Magazine in an article titled “Only Robots on the Inside”.