NAO as a Museum Tour Guide

Project Details


April 2017 – June 2017

Type of Project

Interaction Design and Implementation

Methods & Skills

  • Interaction Design
  • Prototype
  • Python


  • NAO robot
  • Choreographe
  • Naoqi


Interaction Flow


Final Report

Background Problem

This project is as a final project of 0HM280 Human-Robot Interaction course.

Nowadays, robots are deployed in many domains such as healthcare, domestic environments,
and so on. Robots are not only working with professional operators but also with normal people, for example, kids and elderly people. Consequently, the need for having a natural human-like interaction is growing rapidly. Recent research showed that more than 60% of all information delivered during communications is through non-verbal interaction.
To interact with a novice, a robot needs to approach a person, attract and monitor attention, and possess context awareness. A Museum is considered as a social context. Thus, a robot functioning as a museum guide is a good example to demonstrate the kind of social interaction between humans and the robot. Navigation, perception, cognition, and behavior selection skills are required here because these are skills that need to be exhibited in a social scenario.
In multi-party settings turn taking and joint attention are fundamental cognitive skills for a robot. To achieve a natural human-robot interaction, social cues like co-speech gestures and facial expressions are vital. Hence, this project includes the following parts: face detection, obstacle avoidance, landmark detection, speech recognition, and the application of gestures.

Design and implement a NAO robot as a tour guide in a museum. The NAO robot had to interact with visitors, guide them in the museum and explain the paintings.


Imagine you’re a tourist who visits the Van Gogh Museum in 2030, and you’re going to be led by Bender — Van Gogh Museum’s robot tour guide. When you arrive at the entrance, your face is detected by Bender, and
Bender greets you. Later, Bender asks you to follow him and he takes you to the first painting.
Bender introduces the painting ‘The Starry Night’ by Vincent van Gogh and tells you all
about the painting with a natural interaction using gestures. At the end of the tour, Bender asks
you if you enjoyed the tour, and shows you the way to the exit. You are happy to experience a
natural interaction with Bender and leave the Museum.


TourGuide 01

TourGuide 1