Using the latest generation of humanoid robots, scientists and researchers from the Bristol Robotics Laboratory (UK) and its partner institutions across Europe are developing systems to enable robots and humans to work, for the first time, alongside each other in the real world. They talk, they walk, they even understand some spoken instructions. But until now they've largely been confined to the lab.

This film is the culmination of 4 years of research and technology from five robotic institutes.

At the Bristol Robotics Lab, as well as coordinating the project, specialised in non-verbal communication: exchanging information with robots through pointing and looking.

In the French National Centre for Scientific Research in Toulouse, LAAS CNRS, the team have been investigating what robots can learn about the real world – the people and things that surround them.

While at the Italian Institute of Technology in Genoa, IIT, they’ve developed an advanced human robot, called the iCub.

In the Insitute of the national of medical research INSERM, Lyon, have embedded language processing technology in the iCub, allowing the robot to use language to create and exchange shared plans with humans.

And the Max Planck Institue of Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig, Germany, they’ve been studying human children, looking for clues in the way that humans learn to co-operate.

We’ve got used to robots in factories. But in the 21st century robots will increasingly be living among us. We’ll want them to do things for us. They’ll be alongside us. We need them to understand us. Do what we want. Not endanger us.

This film is an insight to how we might be living with robots in the 21st century!

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