Tuesday, February 21, 2012

No. 444: A robot that searches what you need on your behalf (February 22, 2012)

When you have to search something in an office, a robot can find it on your behalf. Hitachi unveiled the upgraded version of its guide robot EMIEW 2 introduced in 2007. The new version is 80 cm high, and weighs 14 kg. With the help of two wheels, it can travel at 6 km/h.  

You need to install multiple indoor cameras in your office. When you ask the robot aloud “Where is my watch?” the robot will get the image of your watch in the database containing 100 million images on the Internet using the special software in less than one second. It checks the image on the Internet with the image it gets from the in-house cameras, and pinpoints the place where the watch is located. It replies to you with the exact location of the watch, and it takes you to the location if you so desire. The company developed the technology to calculate the optimal posture of the robot instantaneously to prevent it from falling when it goes around a curve. Thanks to this technology, the robot can travel in a balanced manner without reducing speed. The company plans to put the new robot into practical use and market it to business offices and hospitals in less than five years.  

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