Talking Robots: Henrik Lund

Posted 19 Nov 2007 at 21:20 UTC by mwaibel Share This

In the latest Talking Robots podcast we interview Henrik Lund at the University of Southern Denmark who is working on what he calls "physical computer games". Inspired by modular robotics (see e.g. his earlier work on ATRON) he is building and selling interactive playgrounds for children - and being chased by the media for this and similar projects (compare articles on Wired, NewScientistTech and CNN). Why all the hype? Soaring obesity rates and plummeting social skills of the information generation have parents and experts looking hard for solutions. And by marrying computer games with the physical world he is in good company - just think of Nintendo's Wii playstation launched a year ago today, which has made physical activity part of the game and set records with >13M units sold. Henrik Lund's games are interactive, reacting to pressure inputs on playground tiles with patterns of lights and sound. The games are adaptive, changing the difficulty of the game according to who is playing. And they are not restricted to the playground: his company Entertainment Robotics commercializes other applications including therapy, fitness, sport and music products. For more information, check out the recently launched Center for Playware and, of course, listen to the podcast.

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