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by , and   -   October 8, 2019

From Mexican immigrant to MIT, from Girl Power in Latin America to robotics entrepreneurs in Africa and India, the 2019 annual “women in robotics you need to know about” list is here! We’ve featured 150 women so far, from 2013 to 2018, and this time we’re not stopping at 25. We’re featuring 30 inspiring #womeninrobotics because robotics is growing and there are many new stories to be told.

inVia Robotics         


interview by   -   October 7, 2019

In this episode, Lauren Klein speaks with Dr. Rand Voorhies, co-founder and CTO of inVia Robotics. In a world where consumers expect fast home delivery of a variety of goods, inVia’s mission is to help warehouse workers package diverse sets of products quickly using a system of autonomous mobile robots. Voorhies describes how inVia’s robots operate to pick and deliver boxes or totes of products to and from people workers in a warehouse environment eliminating the need for people to walk throughout the warehouse, and how the actions of the robots are optimized.

by   -   October 3, 2019

Our work published recently in Science Robotics describes a new form of computer, ideally suited to controlling soft robots. Our Soft Matter Computer (SMC) is inspired by the way information is encoded and transmitted in the vascular system.

by   -   October 3, 2019

By Anusha Nagabandi

Dexterous manipulation with multi-fingered hands is a grand challenge in robotics: the versatility of the human hand is as yet unrivaled by the capabilities of robotic systems, and bridging this gap will enable more general and capable robots. Although some real-world tasks (like picking up a television remote or a screwdriver) can be accomplished with simple parallel jaw grippers, there are countless tasks (like functionally using the remote to change the channel or using the screwdriver to screw in a nail) in which dexterity enabled by redundant degrees of freedom is critical. In fact, dexterous manipulation is defined as being object-centric, with the goal of controlling object movement through precise control of forces and motions — something that is not possible without the ability to simultaneously impact the object from multiple directions. For example, using only two fingers to attempt common tasks such as opening the lid of a jar or hitting a nail with a hammer would quickly encounter the challenges of slippage, complex contact forces, and underactuation. Although dexterous multi-fingered hands can indeed enable flexibility and success of a wide range of manipulation skills, many of these more complex behaviors are also notoriously difficult to control: They require finely balancing contact forces, breaking and reestablishing contacts repeatedly, and maintaining control of unactuated objects. Success in such settings requires a sufficiently dexterous hand, as well as an intelligent policy that can endow such a hand with the appropriate control strategy. We study precisely this in our work on Deep Dynamics Models for Learning Dexterous Manipulation.

by   -   October 3, 2019

By Leah Burrows

What would it take to transform a flat sheet into a human face? How would the sheet need to grow and shrink to form eyes that are concave into the face and a convex nose and chin that protrude?

by   -   October 3, 2019

By Kourosh Hakhamaneshi

In this post, we share some recent promising results regarding the applications of Deep Learning in analog IC design. While this work targets a specific application, the proposed methods can be used in other black box optimization problems where the environment lacks a cheap/fast evaluation procedure.

by   -   October 3, 2019

One of the biggest urban legends growing up in New York City were rumors about alligators living in the sewers. This myth even inspired a popular children’s book called “The Great Escape: Or, The Sewer Story,” with illustrations of reptiles crawling out of apartment toilets. To this day, city dwellers anxiously look at manholes wondering what lurks below. This curiosity was shared last month by the US Defense Department with its appeal for access to commercial underground complexes.

by   -   October 1, 2019
TeamBathDrones Research’s aerial robot. Photo: European Robotics League

The European Robotics League (ERL) presents the SciRoc Challenge, a new robotics competition on smart cities that occurs every two years in a European city. Funded by the European Commission’s Horizon 2020 framework programme, the first SciRoc challenge takes place in the city of Milton Keynes, United Kingdom. In the context of smart shopping, robots interact with the Milton Keynes Data Hub (MK:DataHub) in a shopping mall. They update stock lists, take customers’ orders or find out the location of a person in need. On the third day of the competition, teams continued competing in the five different episodes and the public could see the first trials in the emergency category. The aerial teams were ready to start delivering autonomously the first-aid kit to the mannequin placed inside the flying arena!

by   -   September 25, 2019
Team bi-it-bots KUKA platform for the shopping pick and pack episode. Photo Credits: European Robotics League

The ERL Smart Cities Robotics Challenge 2019 takes place from 17-21st September in Milton Keynes, United Kingdom. Funded by the European Commission under the SciRoc Horizon 2020 project, this new challenge of the European Robotics League (ERL) focuses on the role of robots in smart cities. The competition includes five different episodes or scenarios under three categories: human-robot interaction & mobility, emergency and manipulation. On the second day of the competition teams kept working on improving their scores to secure a place in the finals.

by   -   September 19, 2019

The ERL Smart Cities Robotics Challenge (SciRoc Challenge) includes five different episodes around the topic of smart shopping. Ten teams from five different countries have travelled to Milton Keynes, UK, to participate in this unique biennial event that brings together the three European Robotics League (ERL) competitions: consumer, professional and emergency.

interview by   -   September 18, 2019



In this episode, Ron Vanderkley interviews Mark Pivac, Chief Technical Officer and co-founder of FBR (formerly Fastbrick Robotics) about the world’s first end-to-end autonomous bricklaying robot, ‘Hadrian X’. Three years after his first interview, we catch up with Pivac to see how FBR has expanded its operation and chat about their latest commercial prototype, ‘Hadrian X’, as well as the future of the robotic construction industry.

by   -   September 18, 2019
OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

The city of Milton Keynes hosts from the 17th to the 21st of September the European Robotics League – Smart Cities Robotics Challenge (SciRoc Challenge). For the first time, international researchers in robotics and artificial intelligence meet in a shopping mall to demonstrate the state of the art in robotics within the context of smart cities and specifically smart shopping.

by   -   September 17, 2019

New robot platform improves patient experience using AI to help patients navigate barriers and health care challenges

SAN FRANCISCO, Sept. 12, 2019 /PRNewswire/ — Catalia Health and Pfizer today announced they have launched a pilot program to explore patient behaviors outside of clinical environments and to test the impact regular engagement with artificial intelligence (AI) has on patients’ treatment journeys. The 12-month pilot uses the Mabu® Wellness Coach, a robot that uses artificial intelligence to gather insights into symptom management and medication adherence trends in select patients.

by   -   September 16, 2019

Jellyfish are about 95% water, making them some of the most diaphanous, delicate animals on the planet. But the remaining 5% of them have yielded important scientific discoveries, like green fluorescent protein (GFP) that is now used extensively by scientists to study gene expression, and life-cycle reversal that could hold the keys to combating aging. Jellyfish may very well harbor other, potentially life-changing secrets, but the difficulty of collecting them has severely limited the study of such “forgotten fauna.” The sampling tools available to marine biologists on remotely operated vehicles (ROVs) were largely developed for the marine oil and gas industries, and are much better-suited to grasping and manipulating rocks and heavy equipment than jellies, often shredding them to pieces in attempts to capture them.

by   -   September 12, 2019
The Intel® RealSense™ D400 Depth Cameras. Credit: Intel Corporation

The Intel RealSense cameras have been gaining in popularity for the past few years for use as a 3D camera and for visual odometry. I had the chance to hear a presentation from Daniel Piro about using the Intel RealSense cameras generally and for SLAM (Simultaneous Localization and Mapping). The following post is based on his talk.

inVia Robotics: Product-Picking Robots for the Warehouse
October 7, 2019