chapter  12
10 Pages

Study on Kawaii in motion - Classifying Kawaii motion using Roomba

The Department of Advanced Robotics, Chiba Institute of Technology Narashino, Chiba, Japan 275-0016

[email protected] ††[email protected] †††[email protected]

In this study, we attempt to categorize Kawaii-ness in motion using Roomba as a testing bed. Kawaii, a Japanese word expressing favorable characteristics such as pretty, adorable and fairly like, is a part of Japanese original concept Kansei (sensibility, sensitivity, feeling, emotion, etc.) and becomes known to many people in relation to Japanese anime. Researchers have started studying Kawaii-ness and results on Kawaii-ness in shape and color have been published but not in motion. We, therefore, focus our study on Kawaii-ness in motion. We chose Roomba for our study because Roomba is not particularly Kawaii in shape or color and that helps us evaluating Kawaii-ness in motion. Furthermore, Roomba shows variety of motions using combinations of three basic motions consisting of straight motion, turn, and spin. This makes it easy to segment and categorize its motion according to Kawaii-ness contents. First, natural motion of Roomba was shown to several subjects and asked them to identify parts of motion that they found Kawaii. We asked to identify Kawaii motions using arrows of various shapes, such as a circular arrow for the circling motion. We then segmented and categorized the motion of Roomba according to the identified Kawaii blocks. Randomly chosen 10 prepared video segments were shown to another set of subjects to ask Kawaii-ness content of those segmented motions. For every Roomba motion a subject found Kawaii, we asked the subject to answer the questionnaire consisting of pairs of adjectives prepared according to the SD method. The representative physical features of

categorized Roomba motions are correlated with the Kawaii-ness based on the result of the questionnaire. We report our findings in detail in this article.