Teresa Escrig

News and oppinion about Cognitive AI & Robotics

Archive for the ‘incomplete information’ tag

What are the benefits of Artificial Intelligence in Robotics?

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Happy New Year to all!  It’s been a while since my last post. Too busy. Now, I’m back.

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Robotics is not only a research field within artificial intelligence, but a field of application, one where all areas of artificial intelligence can be tested and integrated into a final result.

Amazing humanoid robots exhibit elegant and smooth motion capable of walking, running, and going up and down stairs.  They use their hands to protect themselves when falling, and to get up afterward.  They’re an example of the tremendous financial and human capital that is being devoted to research and development in the field of electronics, control and the design of robots.

Very often, the behavior of these robots contains a fixed number of pre-programmed instructions that are repeated regardless of  any changes in the environment. These robots have no autonomy, nor adaptation, to the changing environment, and therefore do not show intelligent behavior. We are amazed by the technology they provide, which is fantastic! But we can not infer that, because the robots are physically so realistic and the movements so precise and gentle, that they are able to do what we (people) do. Read the rest of this entry »

ESA tests autonomous rover in Chilean desert ahead of ExoMars mission

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With remote control of rovers on Mars out of the question due to radio signals taking up to 40 minutes to make the round trip to and from the Red Planet, the European Space Agency (ESA) has developed a vehicle that is able to carry out instructions fully autonomously.

With Mars lacking any GPS satellites to help with navigation, the rover must determine how far it has moved relative to its starting point. However, as ESA’s Gianfranco Visentin points out, any errors in this “dead reckoning” method can “build up into risky uncertainties.”

To minimize any uncertainties, the team sought to fix the rover’s position on a map to an accuracy of one meter (3.28 ft). To build a 3D map of its surroundings, assess how far it had traveled and plan the most efficient route to avoid obstacles, Seeker relied on its stereo vision.

“We managed 5.1 km (3.16 miles), somewhat short of our 6 km goal, but an excellent result considering the variety of terrain crossed, changes in lighting conditions experienced and most of all this was ESA’s first large-scale rover test – though definitely not our last.”

“The difficulty comes with follow-on missions, which will require daily traverses of five to ten times longer,” he says. “With longer journeys, the rover progressively loses sense of where it is.”

By , June 19, 2012

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Cognitive Robots enhances Kompai’s capabilities by incorporating its “Cognitive Brain for Service Robotics”

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Since February 2011, Cognitive Robots and Robosoft have been collaborating on the framework of a European project, the ECHORD C-Kompai. The objective of the project is to enhance the companion robot Kompai with the cognitive capabilities provided by the “Cognitive Brain for Service Robotics ®” – CR-B100 – of Cognitive Robots.

The intent behind the improvement of the Kompai platform is to better serve the users – the elderly.

We have identified 3 aspects of the Kompai’s functionality to be improved in this project:

Read the rest of this entry »

The SICK laser sensor is currently mandatory for autonomous robots – if we want the ability to perceive the world, and therefore show a bit of intelligence

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The security SICK laser sensor is currently mandatory for autonomous robots – if we want the ability to perceive the world, and therefore show a bit of intelligence. It costs almost 3000 euros. While not without its drawbacks, this sensor represents the  state of the art and is the most expensive component in a current autonomous robot.   If we produce robots as prototypes, not on a large scale, we can not provide inexpensive robots yet.

James Falasco – I am curious about the comment that the SICK sensor is mandatory . How so ?

Teresa – Jim, The SICK laser sensor is still mandatory for robots or vehicles that need to show intelligence because:

  • it’s the most reliable distance sensor for medium-long distances, much more than sonar or infrared (which is basically useful for very short distances)
  • it’s necessary to perceive the boundaries of the environment to autonomously build the map of it. The map is necessary for the robot to know where things are.
  • The linear laser, such as SICK, has also drawbacks. The main one is that it only perceives one line.
  • The best way to go would be to have all the information needed and interpreted from a camera, which would be much less expensive, and with richer information.
  • Although we have developed a cognitive vision system which gives meaning to the objects of an image, with two cameras you can get distances to objects, yet we still need further development and some integration to use only camera.
  • We have also integrated into the Cognitive Brain the Kinect sensor with great success. It gives us depth in a conical area in front of the robot, although with short reach (we can’t see the limits of the rooms) and very sensitive to light changes (not good in exterior settings yet).

Summary: We use laser, Kinect and camera sensors. We can’t avoid the laser yet, which is the most expensive component of the whole robot, by far.

I am sure that with more development we can make the camera work to completely substitute the laser. I would love to do it.

Comments of other experts on the subject are very welcome. Thanks.

Read the comments.

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Cognitive Robots is actively seeking working partnerships and investment capital

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My name is Teresa Escrig (TeresaEscrig.com).  I’m the founder and CEO of Cognitive Robots.

We’ve successfully developed the worlds first truly autonomous Cognitive Brain, and have focused our efforts on Service Robotics.

We’re actively seeking both working partnerships and investment capital.

Highlights to-date include:

  • A part of the Cognitive Brain for Service Robotics has been successfully incorporated into a commercial floor scrubber machine, as well as a Pioneer research platform (investment from different sources).
  • Our ‘Manual Assisted Driver’ has been successfully incorporated into forklifts and buses (funded by the Spanish government).
  • We have integrating the Cognitive Brain into our own service robotics platform.  This will be launched in the next few months, and can be used for a variety of applications, including companion, security, marketing, air contamination detection, etc. (funded by Spanish government).
  • The Cognitive Brain is being incorporated into Robosoft’s companion robot Kompai of (funded by a European Project).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you’d like further information, we’ve prepared a .pdf document that explains in detail what we have and are offering.

If you are interested, please, contact me at mtescrig@c-robots.com

Kind Regards, Teresa Escrig, PhD, CEO Cognitive Robots

How robots create jobs

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Service Robotics will ultimately create more highly skilled jobs – a good thing in an economy struggling to reinvent itself and a great way to spread the word that the ‘Service Robotics Revolution’ is here.

by Adil Shafi , President, ADVENOVATION, Inc.

Originally posted 04/04/2012 on Robotics Online

No army can stop an idea whose time has come ~ Victor Hugo

In 2011, the International Federation of Robotics commissioned a report on how robots create jobs. http://www.ifr.org/robots-create-jobs/. The findings report that, “One million industrial robots currently in operation have been directly responsible for the creation of close to three million jobs… A growth in robot use over the next five years will result in the creation of one million high quality jobs around the world.”

Further, the market research firm Metra Martech wrote, “In world terms three to five million jobs would not exist if automation and robotics had not been developed to enable cost effective production of millions of electronic products from Phones to PlayStations.” The report actually covers several markets in the automotive, electronics, food and beverage, plastics, chemicals and pharmaceutical industries and focuses on countries like Brazil, China, Germany, Japan, Republic of Korea and USA. The complete report is available at ifr.org .

Read more: http://roboticsonline.wordpress.com/2012/04/09/how-robots-create-jobs/

New Applications for Mobile Robots

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This article explores the potential for autonomous robots.  Manufacturing arm manipulator robots, which have been successfully incorporated by industry for the last century, repeat actions and do not adapt to environmental changes. Autonomous robots, need to include a higher level of intelligence, to be able to interact with humans in changing environments, where uncertainty exists. Most of the current autonomous applications, still do not incorporate this existing and available technology. The following is an excellent article that reviews the most important current applications for autonomous robots. Enjoy!

by Bennett Brumson , Contributing Editor
Robotic Industries Association
Posted 04/05/2012

Mobility promises to be the next frontier in flexible robotics. While fixed robots will always have a place in manufacturing, augmenting traditional robots with mobile robots promises additional flexibility to end-users in new applications. These applications include medical and surgical uses, personal assistance, security, warehouse and distribution applications, as well as ocean and space exploration.

Read more: http://www.robotics.org/content-detail.cfm/Industrial-Robotics-Feature-Article/New-Applications-for-Mobile-Robots/content_id/3362

UCLA professor wins $250K computing prize for AI

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The technology which has been awarded is similar to the IP developed at Cognitive Robots.

NEW YORK — A University of California, Los Angeles professor is the winner of a $250,000 computing prize for his work in artificial intelligence.

Judea Pearl was named winner of the 2011 A.M. Turing Award on Thursday, one of the most prestigious honors in computing.

Pearl, 75, contributed to the field of artificial intelligence by developing mathematical formulas that factor in uncertainty. That allows computers to find connections between millions of pieces of data, even when the information is incomplete or vague. His work has made it possible for computers to think more like humans, as humans often have to make inferences in decision making.

The award, named after the British mathematician Alan Turing, is given annually by the Association for Computing Machinery. Intel (INTC) and Google (GOOG) provide funding.

http://www.mercurynews.com/business/ci_20182769/ucla-professor-wins-250k-computing-prize-ai?source=email

Kiva Robots sold to Amazon for $775 Million – imagine adding intelligence to the robots!

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Amazon just bought robotics manufacturer Kiva Systems for $775 million.  Kiva specializes in warehouse fulfillment robots.

While quick and precise, this technology was available 20 years ago, for autonomous forklifts in warehouses: following wires on the floor.

What remains missing is the addition of intelligence to the robots so that:

– The whole infrastructure of the warehouse floors – a costly investment in itself – wouldn’t be necessary.

– Any change in the environment or in the robots performance wouldn’t need to redefine the whole system.

http://techland.time.com/2012/03/21/amazons-775-million-acquisition-of-kiva-systems-could-shift-how-businesses-see-robots/

Here is a video of the Kiva robots performance.