February 19, 2021
This week in The History of AI at AIWS.net – Waseda University built WABOT-2 in 1984. A follow up to the WABOT-1 they built in 1973, this robot was also anthropomorphic, but improvements were made.
The WABOT-2 was a follow-up to the WABOT-1 project. This iteration can now play music of average difficulty on an electronic organ. It was now able to converse with another person as well. In addition, it now has a camera for its head. A contrast with WABOT-1 is that WABOT-2 is considered a “specialist robot” instead of a “versatile robot”.
After the success of WABOT-1 in 1973, Waseda University picked the project back up in 1980. The project developed by a study group at the School of Science & Engineering. The goal of this project was to create an anthropomorphic robot that could perform intelligent tasks such as performing music. Thus, WABOT-2 became more specialised, rather than the versatility of WABOT-1
Similar to the WABOT-1, WABOT-2 was mainly a robotic project. Still, the WABOT-2 helped develop AI in improving the WABOT’s ability to conversate. The HAI initiative considers this an event, as with the first one, in the History of AI due to its contributions to the development of AI.