ITI Talks: robots and serious games

The Interactive Technologies Institute hosted yet another engaging edition of ITI Talks on Friday, February 9th. The monthly event, known for its insightful presentations and discussions, featured two distinguished speakers who shared their research and findings with a diverse audience both in Lisbon and Funchal.

ITI Talks are monthly events where members of the Interactive Technologies Institute present their work. The hybrid format allows for physical participation in Lisbon and Funchal, with a ZOOM session connecting attendees in both locations and remote participants.

The event of February showcased the expertise of Francisco Vasconcelos, a Junior Researcher at the Interactive Technologies Institute, and Isabel Neto, a Ph.D. Candidate at Instituto Superior T├ęcnico. Francisco delved into the realm of serious games with his talk, “Approaching household food waste reduction with a serious game for children.” Meanwhile, Isabel Neto shared her insights on inclusion with her presentation titled “Inclusion Through A Touch-Based Robot Among Mixed-Visual Ability Children.”

Francisco Vasconcelos: Serious Gaming for Social Impact

Francisco Vasconcelos, a passionate advocate for game development, focused on the pressing issue of household food waste. His talk explored the potential of serious games as a tool to engage and educate children on the best practices for food waste reduction. Collaborating with the local Food Bank, Francisco emphasized the need to approach the topic early on and tailored for younger audiences.

Isabel Neto: Enhancing Inclusion with Touch-Based Robots

Isabel Neto, concluding her Ph.D. at IST, shared her innovative research at the intersection of accessibility, education, artificial intelligence, and human-robot interaction. Her presentation highlighted the development of Touchibo, a tactile storyteller robot designed to create an inclusive space for group interaction among children with mixed visual abilities. The study involved 107 children, with results indicating significant improvements in individual and group participation perception.

The February edition once again demonstrated the Interactive Technologies Institute’s commitment to fostering knowledge exchange and pushing the boundaries of interactive technologies. As we eagerly await the next ITI Talks, the insights shared by Francisco Vasconcelos and Isabel Neto continue to resonate, inspiring further exploration and advancements in the field.