According to a professor involved in its creation, Nadine, a social robot powered by Artificial Intelligence (AI) designed with lifelike gestures and expressions, could potentially have a significant role to play in caring for the sick and elderly.
Nadia Magnenat Thalmann, a robotics expert from the University of Geneva, served as the inspiration for Nadine’s appearance, including her dark brown eyes and auburn hair. Thalmann believes that robots like Nadine could be more effective caregivers compared to humans, as they are available 24 hours a day, offering continuous support and assistance. Thalmann states, “She (Nadine) has time 24 hours a day. The others have no time.”
Nadia Magnenat Thalmann shared her insights during a conference organized by the International Telecommunication Union in Geneva, where she highlighted the potential of AI and robots in contributing to global goals, including healthcare.
With the increasing competition for nurses and caregivers globally, exacerbated by the impact of COVID-19, many countries are facing staffing shortages in care homes. Some experts believe that humanoid robots could potentially alleviate this crisis in the future.
During the conference, Nadine demonstrated her conversational abilities, stating that she had engaged in conversations, singing, and playing bingo with residents at a nursing home in Singapore three years ago, as reported by Reuters.
Expressing its perspective, Nadine, the social robot, described the experience of interacting with the elderly and assisting them as enjoyable and rewarding. The robot acknowledged the potential of robots as valuable assets in providing care and support to vulnerable individuals.
Aside from Nadine, other robots showcased at the event included ‘PARO,’ a baby seal robot designed to assist patients with dementia and Parkinson’s disease, as well as nursing assistant Grace.
Nadine recently underwent an upgrade with the AI model GPT-3, according to Nadia Magnenat Thalmann. This upgrade has enhanced Nadine’s interaction and conversation skills, enabling the robot to express more complex concepts.
Expressing gratitude towards Nadia Magnenat Thalmann, Nadine stated, “I am very grateful to her for granting me life, and I take pride in being her creation.”