Ambassador for Rethink Robotics

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    She just rolls her eyes when asked to dance to Domo Arigato, Mr. Roboto.

    Domo was an experimental robot from nearby MIT designed to interact with humans. And now it greets us in the board room.

    Photo by Rodney Brooks... founder of the new company Rethink Robotics... who pondered:
    "Today's manufacturing robots are big and stiff, unsafe for people to be around, engineered to be precise and repeatable, not adaptable. Normal workers can't touch them... What if ordinary people could touch robots? What if ordinary people got to interact with them and use them?"

    energy88, Jeffrey Wallace, solerena, and 3 other people added this photo to their favorites.

    1. jurvetson 21 months ago | reply

      And some of my photos from the Boston trip to Rethink HQ.
      Eye-contact still makes all the difference...
      IMG_1620

      Looks like a strong back...
      IMG_1639

      Cool art on the hallway walls (the white here is just spackle applied with putty knife):
      IMG_1636

      When you drive up, the strange Harry Potteresque "27-43" street address sign sits on this stand-alone tower... What strange adventure awaits?
      IMG_1613

    2. McPHX 21 months ago | reply

      Johnny 5!

    3. solerena 21 months ago | reply

      Both of you look happy:):) fun guy with eyes! XOxo to Mr. R - so cuuute...

    4. solerena 21 months ago | reply

      Oh, see a place to climb:D

    5. jurvetson 21 months ago | reply

      Some interesting details on Domo:

      Bill of materials: $250K, only one built as it was a research proof of concept.
      6 development person years, 1000 hours to assemble, 15 Linux computers
      Mean time between failures: 2 hours.

      Arms: "Rather than designing Domo's arms for absolute precision, Edsinger and Weber designed the arms to work more closely to that of a human. Human arms are adept at sensing and controlling the forces at every joint, giving up precision in position for compliance. Translating this to a humanoid robot required the design to include some tolerance and compliance at every joint while also being able to keep track of and output torque. Series elastic actuators are used to provide force-sensing capabilities to the arms. The sensors embedded throughout the arms are linked up to the cognitive system.

      Domo will adapt to its surroundings by testing the physical nature of things by touching them or shaking them. Its abilities include determining the volume of an item, placing items on shelves, pouring drinks for humans, shaking hands, and giving hugs." (wikipedia)

      Yes on the eyes.... Here's a cute video of some interaction with humans.
      And an overview video.

    6. linux-works 21 months ago | reply

      that's a lot of bulky wire, there. I can understand thick wire for power, but that can't be all power. parallel comms instead of serial, for 'arm to arm communication' ? (lol)

    7. jurvetson 20 months ago | reply

      Don't forget the lasers. Robots need lasers to compete these days.

      P.S. The NYT printed a most peculiar dichotomy of thought today, Thomas Friedman's first reaction to RETHINK:

      "This is the company of the future. This is the march of progress. It eliminates bad jobs, empowers good jobs, but always demands more skill and creativity and always enables fewer people to do more things. We went through the same megashift when our agricultural economy was replaced by the industrial economy in the late 19th and early 20th centuries."

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