A central question of the MIA-PROM project is whether it makes sense for the purpose of assisting PROM surveys to use not only a digital avatar, but also a physically embodied avatar – i.e., a kind of robot. The third meeting of the Advisory Board, held online on June 29, was therefore devoted to the question of what such a robot should look like and be like.
To decide this question, specific options were developed and discussed with the advisory board. Among the options were better known robots such as Jibo or Pepper, but also lesser known ones such as the PLEN Cube from Japan, the Furhat or the newly developed Navel. A playful version (EMO) as well as an abstract version of a robot was also brought in, namely, the idea of using a curved OLED display on which a digital avatar then appears in turn.
The meeting was able to produce a fairly clear vote, with most people from the advisory board speaking out against the somewhat larger and anthropomorphic (i.e. human-like) designed robots such as Pepper or Navel, as these offered too much functionality for the purpose, or were therefore not suitable for the project. EMO, on the other hand, was perceived as too playful for the serious context. The Furhat and the idea of using an OLED display were positively received, as this would allow maximum flexibility, which in turn also takes our research design into account.