The Robots that Care collection at Fabric of Digital Life database and repository provides a public dataset of video marketing materials for the social robots that are related to a study titled, Involving Seniors In Developing Privacy Best Practices: Toward Responsible Development of Social Support Technologies for Seniors led by Dr. Andrea Slane, Dr. Isabel Pedersen, and Dr. Patrick Hung, Ontario Tech University. This project has been funded by the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada (OPC); the views expressed herein are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of the OPC.
This small, focused collection of 12 artifacts includes company advertising videos that describe robot products claiming to provide social interaction in some capacity. The robots are Misty, Temi, Zenbo, Rudy, Elli.Q, Rudy, Mabu, and Buddy. Researchers used 19 metadata fields to catalogue and analyze the videos. Each artifact has been categorized according to a taxonomy of technology keywords relating to Robots, Human-Robot Interaction (HRI), Human-Robot Communication and Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) to chart technical features in detail.The ongoing larger research probes several questions. It aims to collect seniors’ perspectives on current and emerging digital networked technologies and applications, in both their present and future forms. Are consumers' personal data appropriately protected? To what extent can a robot serve as a surrogate for human interaction or a salve for loneliness? Exactly which technical features, or combinations of them, can be categorized as constituting care, or simulating care by a robot? Can robotic AI simulate caring language despite the fact that humans make meaning dynamically?