Hugh Owen library to introduce robot librarian

Meet Hugh, your new best friend


Robotics students Pasi and Ariel created an artificially intelligent robot librarian that might soon assist you in searching your library books.

Pasi William Sachiti and Arie Ladegaard combined existing robot technology with infromation from PRIMO, the uni library search facility to create a robot which can take verbal book requests and guide students to the relevant book shelf where the item is kept.

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The robot, which can access the data to 800,000 books was presented at a BCS Show & Tell event in Aber yesterday.

“The next phase is to look at how it moves around without bumping into people and library furniture, how it finds out where the books are, how it interprets voice commands, how it displays the information, and what it looks like”, said Ariel. “And of course, in a quet environment such as a library, should it have its own voice?”

Pasi explains why they are trying to programme Hugh as consumer-friendly as possible. “As many who use mobile phone apps know, the simpler the app is, the more people are likely to use it. We are adopting the same philosophy  with Hugh.”

The students envision robot Hugh to be the first of many “narrowly artificially intelligent  robots” who will be able to undertrake specific tasks in enviromnents such as hospitals, care homes or supermarkets.

Customer Services and Academic Engagement  Manager for Information Services at Aber welcomes the help of the artificially intelligent library robot.

“The response of staff to the work done by Pasi and Ariel has been fantastic and we look forward to working with them as they test the prototype over the coming  months.”