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An Emotion robot for long-distance lovers

Zoe RomanoMay 5th, 2014


If you live far away from your lover, this project could make you feel the presence and the emotional state of your partner without making voice calls.

El Niño is the prototype of a set of physical avatars for casual communication built on Arduino Uno. The system designed by a duo of designer of the Faculty of Arts & Design, Bauhaus-Universität Weimar, helps enhancing the emotional connection and awareness between people in long distance relationships by providing a low-threshold channel for exchanging simple messages:

Two stationary anthropomorphic robots are used as tangible user interfaces that can mimic human emotions by displaying symbolic facial expressions on low-resolution screens, in order to reflect the emotional state of the user. The system allows its users to casually express their emotions over a distance through dedicated networked objects. El Niño is currently a functional work-in-progress prototype. The system was built and designed using a combination of open source hardware and a 3D-printed enclosure.


Find out more on the project on Weng Xinyu website.


2 Responses to “An Emotion robot for long-distance lovers”

  1. Subtrix Says:

    I live in a long-distance relationship and I really think this is something that could make live a bit easier. Sometimes there is a big lack of nearness, because of too less time together. This little robot doesn’t do much, but it gives a bit the feeling of beeing near to each other back… Great idea!!

  2. Eineki Says:

    Cute, it reminds me of the Narang project:

    I saw it in the Maker Faire Rome last october and I was overelmed of the emotional link it can create. Maybe you can take inspiration from that project too.

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