Robonaut-2 Says "Hello world" in American Sign Language From the ISS



On 13 March 2012, NASA's Robonaut-2 said "hello world" in American Sign Language (ASL) from the International Space Station. I am told that the idea for this came from my suggestion posted on NASA Watch several months ago (below). How cool.

Keith's 15 Februrary note: @AstroRobonaut just tweeted: "Did you catch that? I don't have a voice, but I sent you a message -- Hello world ... in sign language!"

Photos: Robonaut-2 Gestures In Space

Keith's 15 Nov 2011 note: I have seen Robonaut-2 in action and its dexterity is interesting - and rather facile. So ... how could NASA demonstrate this dexterity in new ways, make it a little more "human" or approachable, - and reach a new segment of the populace that is normally overlooked? Program it to use Sign Language. Background: I worked for more than a decade as a professional certified (educational) sign language interpreter. This idea occurred to me when I was looking at this picture and instantly wondered what Robonaut-2 "wanted" or why it was seemingly in the process of saying "here" or maybe "give". Imagine how fast a video of Robonaut-2 saying something in American Sign Language from space would go viral. NASA could have a competition wherein people submit questions for it to answer. NASA already has a signing astronaut and SMD and NLSI already put out books in Braille. Just a thought.

P.S. Maybe he could repeat what that alien signed in "Close Encounters of the Third Kind" (video). If you watch that scene, the alien that is signing actually moves its hand like Robonaut does. I first saw this film when it came out with my hearing impaired roommates - none of us knew that aliens were going to sign so we all freaked out when one of them did. Of course, it was natural to us that all aliens would know how to sign - since they all already speak English, right?


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