Humanoid robot builder Hanson Robotics is back, unveiling an educational robot called Professor Einstein that walks and talks like the real thing (sort of). The company has just launched a crowdfunding campaign for its latest cute and possibly creepy machine, which through a range of facial expressions, gestures and speech recognition aims to offer a unique learning experience for scientifically curious minds

The Professor Einstein robot works together with an accompanying mobile app called Stein-O-Matic to give users access to range of learning activities. Place the mobile device next to the robot and he will guide the user through interactive lessons, thought experiments and mental exercises, and reward success with IQ points, which can be used to unlock bonus games, new avatars and other special items.

When class is over, the robot doubles as a personal assistant. He can simply have a chat with the user, as well as answer questions about the weather, celebrities, food and math and also manage a calendar and to-do list. Loaded with more than 50 gestures including smiles, frowns and the ability to stick his tongue out, his responses will be spiced up with a little personality, too.

Standing 14.5 in (35 cm) tall and powered by rechargeable batteries, the robot is also designed to be portable for science learning on the go. The app works with iOS and Android and each charge of the batteries should be good for up to three hours of playtime.

Hanson Robotics has completed its prototyping phase and is raising funds on Kickstarter for production. Early bird pledges of HK$1,931 (US$249) are available and will have a Professor Einstein headed your way in April if the campaign runs as planned. You can check out the pitch video below.

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