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iRobot Roomba and the Future of Domestic Robots. Dr. Hayden So Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering 12 Sep, 2008. Rosie of the Jetsons. Domestic Robots. Robots that help us do our work at home Service robots, home robots, therapeutic robots… Why do we care?.

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irobot roomba and the future of domestic robots

iRobotRoomba and the Future of Domestic Robots

Dr. Hayden So

Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering

12 Sep, 2008

domestic robots
Domestic Robots
  • Robots that help us do our work at home
    • Service robots, home robots, therapeutic robots…
  • Why do we care?

A Robot in Every Home…

pet robot aibo
Pet Robot – Aibo

Cost:

~US$ 2,500

irobot roomba
iRobotRoomba
  • Autonomous vacuum cleaning robot
  • Introduced in 2002
  • Detect dirt and clean dirty area automatically
  • Scheduler
  • Auto recharge
    • Finished vacuum
    • Low battery
  • Dumb? Smart?

Cost:

US$ 279.99

roomba is dumb and smart
Roomba is Dumb and Smart
  • Dumb
    • Does not remember contour of your room
    • Does not remember the spot that has been cleaned
  • Smart
    • Auto slow down to avoid hard collision
    • Pressure sensors
    • Dirt sensors
    • Virtual Wall + Light House “guide” Roomba around the house

Home base/

Virtual Wall/

Lighthouse

IR sensor

Cliff Detection

Sensors

Pressure

Sensors

Dirt

Sensors

robot is about robust control
Robot is about Robust Control
  • A feedback control system
    • React according to the environment
  • Read from Environment
    • Motor Position
    • GPS, Acceleration/Velocity, Dirt, Heat, Light, IR, RF
  • Decision Making
    • Should I move/stop?
    • How far? How fast?
  • Reaction
    • Accelerate, Decelerate
    • Stop, open arm, close arm, etc
robotic vision
Robotic Vision
  • Analyzing environment using visible light
  • Computer vision is difficult
    • Cheap robots like Roomba can’t do it.
  • FPGA for autonomous control
therapeutic robot
Therapeutic Robot
  • Human Companion
  • Has psychological therapeutic effects
  • Example: Paro the seal