Crowdfunding Enables Ebermannstadt High School to Purchase a NAO Robot
NAO has two high-resolution cameras, seven touch sensors on its head, hands, and feet, sonars, an inertial measurement unit to sense its surroundings and locate itself in space, and four directional microphones and speakers to interact with humans. Voice recognition and dialogue are possible with it in 20 languages. NAO can be used to promote reading as a reading mentor for children.
Siegfried Reck, principal at Gymnasium Fränkische Schweiz (GFS), was surprised when he saw the humanoid robot NAO in action for the first time at the opening of BayernLab Forchheim. NAO is 58 centimeters tall and can speak and move like a human.
Reck was excited by the robot’s many possibilities and envisioned how teachers and students at GFS could use NAO and gain robot programming and AI experience. Therefore, the principal had several conversations with the head of BayernLab right away. However, at around €10,000, such a robot is also not very cheap to buy.
However, the deputy principal Gabriel Hetz had the idea to ask the parents’ council and the association of friends of the GFS for support. The chairwoman of the parents’ council, Katrin Hofmann, and the chairman of the association, Erhard Herrmann, were also immediately enthusiastic.
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Together, the financing for NAO was launched as part of a crowdfunding campaign on the Volksbank Forchheim platform
In order to inspire parents, the GFS borrowed a NAO and was able to present it during a parents’ lecture evening given by digital trainer Hendrik Odenthal. The reactions were very positive, so Siegfried Reck was pleased with the rapid response from everyone and the dynamic development. Within only 40 days the financing was secured by many supporters so that NAO can be ordered. A heartfelt thank you from the booster club, parents’ council, and school management goes out to all supporters at this point.
Everyone is now eagerly waiting for the robot to be handed over for the new school year so that the students can gain experience together. They can then carry out projects on face recognition, for example. Or they can program the robot to make independent presentations when people approach. It can serve as an opponent in board games, but it can also be programmed to run through a maze. NAO can be used to promote reading as a reading mentor for children or as a companion and greeter robot at events. “The possibilities of programming seem almost unlimited,” Reck said, fascinated, explaining that its use lends itself not only to regular computer science classes but also to seminars and elective courses. “In doing so, our students can gain almost unlimited programming experience and learn about high-tech robotics while still in school,” the principal enthused.
NAO has two high-resolution cameras, seven touch sensors on its head, hands, and feet, sonars and an inertial measurement unit to sense its surroundings and locate itself in space, and four directional microphones and speakers to interact with humans. Voice recognition and dialogue are possible with it in 20 languages. “Following 3D printing, milling technology, and laser engraving, this is a further step at the Franconian Switzerland high school to get pupils interested in technical topics,” said Katrin Hofmann and Erhard Herrmann agreed.
(Featured image by rjmcsorley via Pixabay)
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First published in Der Neve Wiesentbote, a third-party contributor translated and adapted the article from the original. In case of discrepancy, the original will prevail.
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