Skip Programming, This Robot Can Learn

CIO | Oct 19, 2014

The iRover uses its "brain" to avoid obstacles. Follow reporter Nick Barber on Twitter @nickjb

This robot wasn't programmed to avoid these obstacles, it learned how to do it. The iRover is a two wheeled 3D printed robot that runs BrainOS from San Diego based Brain Corporation. Inside the iRover is the bStem developer kit, a 3by3 inch printed circuit board with a Qualcomm Snapdragon S4-Pro processor. The bStem includes an accelerometer, gyroscope and dual HD cameras. The bStem runs Ubuntu Linux and the company's BrainOS. In the first stage, when the robots ears are red, it's listening and learning from human input. In this example it's being driven around an obstacle course. After just a lap or two it's able to navigate the course almost on its own, which is signified by its green ears. During its autonomous phase it's possible to input corrections.

Jean-Baptiste Passot
Scientist, Brain Corporation
We believe robots are not out there because they are not adaptable to their environment and they are really difficult to program for certain types of tasks and for some of these tasks it's actually way more efficient to teach them to the robot.

The company said its focusing on consumer robotics and the development platform will be launched to a small group of partners this week. It will be available more widely before the end of the year, but pricing and an exact launch date weren't announced. In Boston, Nick Barber, IDG News Service.
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