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Slideshow: Service Robots Can Do Most Anything
11/12/2012

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Robotic fish that swim in schools and cooperate using artificial intelligence to detect and identify pollution in seawater have been created by SHOAL, an EU-funded group of researchers led by BMT Group. The goal is to cut the time required to detect pollution in ports and other aquatic areas from weeks to seconds, using the robotic fishes' chemical sensors for onsite analysis. The robots can avoid obstacles, determine where to look for pollution using mapping, locate its source, maintain a maximum communication distance from the rest of the school, send data underwater back to a base station, and return to it for recharging.   (Source: BMT Group)
Robotic fish that swim in schools and cooperate using artificial intelligence to detect and identify pollution in seawater have been created by SHOAL, an EU-funded group of researchers led by BMT Group. The goal is to cut the time required to detect pollution in ports and other aquatic areas from weeks to seconds, using the robotic fishes' chemical sensors for onsite analysis. The robots can avoid obstacles, determine where to look for pollution using mapping, locate its source, maintain a maximum communication distance from the rest of the school, send data underwater back to a base station, and return to it for recharging.
(Source: BMT Group)

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mrdon
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Re: Diversity
mrdon   11/29/2012 12:58:35 AM
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SparkyWatt, I agree. The slideshow was not impressive due to the unrealistic designs being proposed. I'm a firm believer that design concepts need to be validated using functional prototypes instead of "What If" imagery. Its about practicality thru functionality that truly brings a design to life.

mrdon
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Re: Diversity
mrdon   11/29/2012 12:58:35 AM
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SparkyWatt, I agree. The slideshow was not impressive due to the unrealistic designs being proposed. I'm a firm believer that design concepts need to be validated using functional prototypes instead of "What If" imagery. Its about practicality thru functionality that truly brings a design to life.

Ann R. Thryft
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Re: Diversity
Ann R. Thryft   12/6/2012 12:21:30 PM
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mrdon, to answer your question, 5 of these are in development (numbers 2, 5, 8, 10 and 11), and the other 6 are actually operational. Many readers want to see what's being developed, tried out, or even just thought of, as well as what's actually working.

mrdon
User Rank
Gold
Re: Diversity
mrdon   12/6/2012 1:02:03 PM
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Ann, Ok . Thanks for clarifying the slides. It's cool sometimes to see what is possible to what's practical. Imagination is truly the seed for innovation.

William K.
User Rank
Platinum
Service robots: Concepts versus reality
William K.   12/26/2012 12:17:43 PM
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Some of the applications proposed were very good ideas, but some did seem to be quite unrealistic. The "service station" satelite is one that is quite a stretch in that it could only work with those packages designed to work with it. 

In addition, all of the packages showing a system using only two wheels wind up beng fairly limited, since the effort to maintain balance will certainly reduce the types of surfaces that they can function on. That is even more so for those units mentioned as working in law enforcement or surveilence, where stability is vital. It would be quite simple to disable a two-wheeled robotic cop, for instance. Just toss a heavy coat over it's head and it is out of service.

BUt the ultimate realm of service robots is very large once we get past the unworkable concepts. That is where engineering enters the picture, because engineers usually have a better grasp of what can and can not work. 

robatnorcross
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Re: Diversity
robatnorcross   12/26/2012 6:07:58 PM
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Hi Ann,

Is that a USB port on the fishes lower lip (I guess fish have lips) anyway, instead of sprinkling food in the water for the old-fashioned type of fish the port is probably for down-loading the "fishes" memory and for recharging the thing.

sdoyle
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fish video link
sdoyle   10/10/2013 9:55:49 AM
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Ann R. Thryft
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Re: Diversity
Ann R. Thryft   10/10/2013 1:14:55 PM
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mrdon, thanks for your response. We try to tell readers about stuff that's actually available or in existence, as well as designs and products that are bleeding edge or just out of the lab. We think great concepts and ideas are worth knowing about, as well as ones that have made it all the way to commercialization. That path may be littered with the corpses of great ideas, so to speak: they sometimes fail for other reasons.

Ann R. Thryft
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Re: fish video link
Ann R. Thryft   10/10/2013 1:18:42 PM
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sdoyle, thanks for the video link to the fish robot. That makes it a lot clearer how it works.

Ann R. Thryft
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Blogger
Re: Diversity
Ann R. Thryft   10/10/2013 1:21:44 PM
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robatbnorcross, good observation. It sure looks like a USB port to me, too. And yes, fish have lips. Haven't you ever seen someone "make fish lips" at you?



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