Telepresence Robot – Job Bedford

Assignment — jbedford @ 6:18 pm

In this project, a robot intervenes in public and attempts to have casual conversation with people. Unscripted and unrehearsed, we observe peoples natural reactions to robots and how the dynamics of dialog and interactions play out.

I am puppeteering this robot for a hidden location. People are unaware if this robot is autonomous or tele-operated.


Telepresence: I am able to semi-transfer my person through this robot. Using a fat shark vision system, I see what the robots camera sees. Using a wireless speaker system, the robot speaks what I speak. With remote controlled mobile system I can move the robot to where I would go.
This enables me to interact with people through the disguise of a robot.

“Robots allow you to do things you wouldn’t normally do.”
With this robot, I can harass people, talk to complete strangers, use pickup lines on girls, scare little children, sell chocolate, and cause public disruption. I can do all this without punishment or reprimand. Robots are perceived as infallible innocent creatures.

People don’t know how to react. Robot takes upon a character of a curios innocent looking to make friends, explore, and initiate conversation.

Choice Interactions [with video time]:
– Waking up a sleeping person form a nap.[6:15]
– Accidentally terrifying a 8-year-old. [2:48]
– Flattering a girl, then pursuing her. [5:06]
– selling two chocolate bars. (“Am i really about to buy a chocolate bar off this robot right now? Do i need this experience in my life?”) [3:46]
– Catching a girl talking on a phone off-guard (“I think a robot is talking to me….A robot is bothering me”) [1:45]
– Repetitively running into a wall [5:48]


  1. what’s going on in this video?
    a few words please.

    Comment by Ali Momeni — May 15, 2014 @ 10:46 am
  2. Word have been written. Thanks

    Comment by jbedford — May 16, 2014 @ 11:18 am

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