'Effie St John' (the robot) joins the Centre for Research in Digital Education
This week the Centre welcomed our new ‘robot colleague’ (mentioned in our teaching Manisfesto) Effie St John is a telepresence robot, which we are trialling over the next few months on behalf of the Edinburgh Futures Institute (EFI - hence the name!).
Effie allows students and colleagues who are not based on the Moray House campus to join in with meetings and other activities in the Centre. A fairly user-friendly web interface gives the ‘driver’ control of Effie: they can see in ‘widescreen’, hear, speak, roll around, get shorter and taller, share their screen, and probably some other things we haven’t discovered yet.
We will be involving Effie as much as possible in our meetings with distant colleagues and students over the next few months, as we aim to better understand the potential of more active telepresence than a typical videoconferencing call can achieve. If there are significant advantages and benefits, the new EFI building may include a whole fleet of robots for students, researchers and visitors to use.
Stay tuned for more on what we discover - and if you want to visit the Centre virtually and give Effie a spin, let us know!