Social pedestrian navigation, such as walking down a crowded sidewalk, is something humans take for granted, but the actual process is quite sophisticated – especially if you’re a robot.
Helping to solve competent robot navigationTHROUGH crowdedhuman spaces was the topic of a research presentation by CornellCOMPUTER science professor Ross Knepper and doctoral student Christoforos Mavrogiannis at the International Workshop on the Algorithmic Foundations of Robotics, Dec. 18-20 in San Francisco.
“The key insight to the research is that we’re trying to minimize uncertainty when people are around a robot that’s moving,” said Knepper. “In a human pedestrian situation, we all implicitly trust each other to behave in a competent manner. If I move right in a hallway, you will mirror that behavior. Building this same trust in robots is non-trivial because trust comes with prediction. There will be a smooth, socially competent experience if I trust the robot will go by me.” . . . Read complete report
Lowe’s is breaking ground by testing robots to help customers navigate their often massive stores and assist with purchases. Although no plans yet exist to implement the autonomous bots nationwide, some believe this is a big leap towards deeply integrating robotics into our daily lives, which experts believe will happen by 2025. RT’s Sam Sacks takes a look at what impact this may have on the human workforce.
Researchers at MIT and Northeastern University have equipped a robot with a novel tactile sensor that lets it grasp a USB cable and insert it into a USB port. (Learn more about the sensor: http://bit.ly/1uNmcft)
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