by Staff Writers
Berkeley CA (SPX) Jun 06, 2017
Grabbing the awkwardly shaped items that people pick up in their day-to-day lives is a slippery task for robots. Irregularly shaped items such as shoes, spray bottles, open boxes, even rubber duckies are easy for people to grab and pick up, but robots struggle with knowing where to apply a grip.
In a significant step toward overcoming this problem, roboticists at UC Berkeley have a built a robot that can pick up and move unfamiliar, real-world objects with a 99 percent success rate.
Berkeley professor Ken Goldberg, postdoctoral researcher Jeff Mahler and the Laboratory for Automation Science and Engineering (AUTOLAB) created the robot, called DexNet 2.0. DexNet 2.0's high grasping success rate means that this technology could soon be applied in industry, with the potential to revolutionize manufacturing and the supply chain.
DexNet 2.0 gained its highly accurate dexterity through a process called deep learning. The researchers built a vast database of three-dimensional shapes - 6.7 million data points in total - that a neural network uses to learn grasps that will pick up and move objects with irregular shapes. The neural network was then connected to a 3D sensor and a robotic arm.
When an object is placed in front of DexNet 2.0, it quickly studies the shape and selects a grasp that will successfully pick up and move the object 99 percent of the time. DexNet 2.0 is also three times faster than its previous version.
DexNet 2.0 was featured as the cover story of the latest issues of MIT Technology Review, which called DexNet 2.0 "the most nimble-fingered robot yet." The complete paper will be published in July.
San Jose, United States (AFP) June 6, 2017
Apple will later this year release a "HomePod" music-centric smart home speaker, challenging a market currently dominated by Amazon and Google in its latest move to weave deeper into people's lives. HomePod, aided by Apple's Siri digital assistant, will be priced at $349 when it begins shipping in December in the United States, Australia and Britain, the tech giant announced at its annual Wo ... read more
University of California - Berkeley
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