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Peer Review

Human Robotics Group



Overall Numeric Rating:

4 stars
Content Quality: 4 stars
Effectiveness: 4 stars
Ease of Use: 4.5 stars
Reviewed: Jan 28, 2006 by Psychology
Overview: The Humanoid Robotics Group is a division of MIT's Artificicial Intelligence
Laboratory. In recent years the AI Lab's focus of exploration has been on
perception and motor systems as the keys to understanding intelligence. The
Humanoid Robotics Group has developed four robots that interact with not only
their environment but humans as well. The Humanoid Robotics Group site has
several sections, each devoted to these prototypes, as well as to their
creators, and includes descriptions, photographs/video clips, and
articles/publications related to robotic research.
Type of Material: This site contains text, graphics, photos, and video clips.
Recommended Uses: This site is a very good resource for individuals pursuing current information
artificial intelligence and its application to robotics. Students who are
studying artificial intelligence could be referred to this site to provide them
with a glimpse of how this subject is studied.

Technical Requirements: There are video clips offered in various formats; Realplayer was effective in
viewing them.
Identify Major Learning Goals: The goal of the Humanoid Robotics Group site is to expose the viewer to the
enormously complex issues associated with artificial intelligence and its
application to the creation of robots that can at all levels interact with their
Target Student Population: The target population is college level students.
Prerequisite Knowledge or Skills: None.

Evaluation and Observation

Content Quality

Rating: 4 stars
Strengths: The content quality of the site is superb, although at times somewhat
overwhelming. A cursory review of some of the material and one quickly realizes
the enormity of the tasks in developing humanoid robots. The site is engaging
and provides the visitor with an understanding of how artificial intelligence is
approached in a lab setting.

Concerns: The site does not seek to be complete or provide needed background information.
For example, the Turing Test is mentioned in a FAQs page and not explained.
Explanatory material on the Turing test would be a logical element to include in
the site.

Potential Effectiveness as a Teaching Tool

Rating: 4 stars
Strengths: There is a wealth of information contained on this site. Students involved in
the study of robotics or artificial intelligence will find this site to be an
excellent reference source.
Concerns: This is not designed as a teaching tool and, as a consequence, has limited use.

Ease of Use for Both Students and Faculty

Rating: 4.5 stars
Strengths: The site's seven sections are easily accessible from the home page. Links to
current research, articles, and publications are numerous, although WinZip must
be downloaded.
Concerns: There were numerous dead links, no links in some places where links would be
expected, and some of the video links were not functional.

Other Issues and Comments: