Robot Learns To Clean Whiteboard, Suck Up To Teacher

Watch out, "A" students. Not only are robots becoming teachers, they are also learning to take your place as the most desirable students. A team of researchers from Italy and Japan, lead by Dr. Petar Kormushev, has taught a Japanese humanoid robot how to clean a whiteboard. The approach that the team developed is called "upper-body kinesthetic teaching", and can be applied to a wide variety of vertical surface related tasks, such as window cleaning, wall painting, wallpaper fitting, drawing on a wall, etc.

The most interesting thing about this demonstration is that the robot learns to perform the task by example; the researcher demonstrates the technique using an eraser held by the robot.


(Robot learns to clean whiteboard)

The present approach allows a free-standing, self-balancing humanoid robot to acquire new motor skills by kinesthetic teaching. The method controls simultaneously the upper and lower body of the robot with different control strategies. Imitation learning is used for training the upper body via kinesthetic teaching, while at the same time ankle/hip reaction motion patterns are used for keeping the balance of the robot. During demonstration, a force/torque sensor is used to record the exerted forces, and during reproduction, a hybrid position/force controller is used to reproduce the learned trajectories in terms of positions and forces to the end effector.

We present an integrated approach allowing a free-standing humanoid robot to acquire new motor skills by kinesthetic teaching. The proposed method controls simultaneously the upper and lower body of the robot with different control strategies. Imitation learning is used for training the upper body of the humanoid robot via kinesthetic teaching, while at the same time Reaction Null Space method is used for keeping the balance of the robot. During demonstration, a force/torque sensor is used to record the exerted forces, and during reproduction, we use a hybrid position/force controller to apply the learned trajectories in terms of positions and forces to the end effector. The proposed method is tested on a 25-DOF Fujitsu HOAP-2 humanoid robot with a surface cleaning task.

Robot fanciers will recognize the HOAP-2 robot, a very limber little robot indeed; see also HOAP-2 Robot Masters Sumo And Linux. RoboShiko!.

The idea of robots that learn by example is well-known to science fiction fans. Anthony Boucher's robot bartender from his 1943 short story Q.U.R. also learns by human example.

The robotic research described above was conducted as a part of an Italian-Japanese collaboration between the Italian Institute of Technology and Tokyo City University. This research will be presented at the International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA) in May 2011 in Shanghai, China. I believe the same team was able to teach a robot to flip a pancake (see video).

Via RLS Laboratory; thanks to the anonymous reader who contributed this item.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 2/16/2011)

Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.

| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |

Would you like to contribute a story tip? It's easy:
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add it here.

Comment/Join discussion ( 0 )

Related News Stories - (" Robotics ")

Flying Dragon Robot Transforms In Mid-Air
Terrific prototype video.

MXene Hydrogel Skin For Robots Flexes And Senses
'The plastex swam and whirled like boiling toothpaste...' - JG Ballard, 1962.

Drywall Robot Looking For Sheetrock
Sheetrockers have sure changed since my day. Speaking as someone who as done this, I welcome robots.

Robots Help People Get Dressed, As Predicted In 1931
Yes, people of the future, robots will dress you.

 

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!) is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for the Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary, the Invention Timeline, or see what's New.

 

 

 

 

 

Current News

Spicy Tomatoes Created With Genetic Engineering
How about mashed potatoes and brown gravy?

Driverless Hotel Rooms Predicted In 1828
'Did you never see a moving house before?'

Yandex Self-Driving Taxi Is Very Smooth
'The big car was slowing down, its computer brain sensing an exit ahead.'

Shrimp Actually Made Of Algae Is A New Wave Food
Bring in that crop algae.

Cosplay Style Wings Could Work On Moon
'They're lovely! - titanalloy struts as light and strong as bird-bones...'

Tesla Model 3 Has Outside Speaker Grille
Robert Heinlein does it again.

Arizona Luddites Attack Self-Driving Vehicles
'Trucks don't drive by themselves...' Or do they?

Organaut! Russians 3D Print Living Tissue In Space
'For a while your colonists will have to come up [to orbit] to the Hospital...'

WINE Spacecraft To Extract Water From Asteroids
'Yes, strangely enough there was still sufficient water beneath the surface of Vesta.'

Japanese Swordsmiths Take On Asteroids
'... a tiny, rocket-powered projectile, drove towards the mysterious bulk.'

Saturn's Rings To Vanish, Let's Mine Them While We Can
'...the valuable shards of what had once been satellites.'

Humans Could Take Up A LOT Less Space
We'd have a lot more room for gardening...

Implosion Fabrication Shrinks 3D Objects To Nanoscale
'Carter had watched miniaturization a hundred times...'

GMO Houseplant Cleans Your Air
Removes compounds too small to be captured by a HEPA filter.

Nova Meat Can 3D Print Your Dinner
Printing out chicken nuggets.

MIT Scientists Create 'Peek-a-Boo Prober' From Jetsons
Well, George, it's the latest thing.

More SF in the News Stories

More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories

Home | Glossary | Invention Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.