Connected Online and Offline Safe Social Networking for Children.
Children today are more connected and active on the Internet. Their extensive use of online social networks, which ultimately could have perplexing effects on the recognition of their identity and personality, has caused grave social concerns. In addition there is a lack of actual physical communication among children due to their preoccupation with the online self. To address these issues, an interactive robotic toy called Petimo was developed. We believe this introduction of new physical dimension improves safety and enjoyment of children in the social networking arena. As a proof-of-concept, a 3D virtual world called Petimo World is developed. It incorporates basic features of traditional online social networks to provide children collaborative interaction and enjoyment with their friends. The concept of Petimo could be extended to any social network to create childrens applications to promote physical interaction and enhance enjoyment and safety issues in social networks. [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]