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Children Get A New Reading Companion in This New Robot

"This robot supports an engaging reading activity, but it's not a social companion to the extent that you could have an open conversation with it."

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New interactive robot can be your kid's reading buddy. Flickr

A new interactive robot, programmed to be an interested listener, may serve as a reading companion for your kid, a new study suggests.

The new robot named “Minnie” can react, cajole and appear thoughtful, said the researchers from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in the US, who have developed the robot.

For the study, the research team designed a two-week reading programme including 25 books representing a range of reading skills and story complexities.

According to the team, the children grew more excited about books and more attached to the robot over two weeks of reading together.

“After one interaction, the kids were generally telling us that, sure, it was nice to have someone to read with as a reading companion,” said co-author Joseph Michaelis from the varsity.

Robot, Reading Companion
FILE – A visitor shakes hands with a humanoid robot at 2018 China International Robot Show in Shanghai (VOA)

“But by the end of two weeks, they were talking about how the robot was funny and silly and afraid, and how they’d come home looking forward to seeing it again,” he added.

The number of children who told the robot has a personality or emotions increased more than four-fold over the two weeks they spent with the robot, the researchers said.

The number reporting they were motivated to read also spiked — and surpassed a control group following a paper-based version of the reading programme. And kids who read with the robot said they felt like they understood and remembered more about the shared books, they added.

Also Read: AI Robots to Help the Students of Japan in Enhancing English Speaking Skills

Social learning — pairing up with a peer to complete math problems or read a chapter in a textbook — is a powerful way to help students develop skills and interests, suggests the findings published in the journal Science Robotics.

“This robot supports an engaging reading activity, but it’s not a social companion to the extent that you could have an open conversation with it. If you had a much more capable robot, that picture might change,” co-author Bilge Mutlu, Professor at the varsity noted.(IANS)

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Google Smartphone Pixel 5 May Have Reverse Charging Feature

In a statement, the company said it has decided not to make Pixel 4 duo available in the country

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Google
In a statement, the company said it has decided not to make Pixel 4 duo available in the country. Pixabay

Almost a week after a purported Pixel 5 XL image had leaked with a unique-looking design language, the smartphone is likely to come with support for reverse charging.

The feature will be called Battery share in the Settings menu, and will let your Pixel 5 wirelessly charge things such as true wireless earbuds, smartwatches, and even other phones.

This feature is obviously nothing new in the mobile world, but so far no Pixel has had it, GSMArena reported on Wednesday quoting XDA Developers.

An earlier leaked image is one of three prototype renders, thus, meaning that the render we are seeing may not see the light of the day as the Google Pixel 5 smartphone.

The YouTuber showed the back of the Pixel 5 in his leak.

It looks monstrous, yes, but it ultimately won’t matter what Google does with the camera module as long as the Pixel 5 takes better photos than ever, according to BGR.

Earlier in October, Google announced the newly-launched Pixel 4 and Pixel 4 XL smartphones will not be available in India.

Google
Almost a week after a purported Pixel 5 XL image had leaked with a unique-looking design language, the smartphone is likely to come with support for reverse charging. Wikimedia Commons

In a statement, the company said it has decided not to make Pixel 4 duo available in the country.

The Google Pixel 4 has a radar sensor, dubbed Project Soli during development, and now called Motion Sense.

This allows the smartphone to support air gestures – so you can wave your hands at your phone to execute certain actions. This works on 60GHz spectrum and that was said to be the reason why the company didn’t launch the phones in India. (IANS)