The Department of Energy’s Savannah River National Laboratory (SRNL) developed the Smart Latch door latching sensor system to indicate whether or not a door is fully closed. The system, which attaches to a standard door, compares the audible signature of a door properly latching to every future instance of the door closing.
The system, developed by Bob Eakle, principal engineer for SRNL, uses a die-mounted VR Stamp speech recognition chip from Sensory Inc. to register the acoustic signature and a small transducer/microphone to pick up the sound. The housing, which according to Eakle is as small as a wrist watch, is constructed of polycarbonate material. When not in use, the Smart Latch “goes to sleep” to avoid draining its battery, and won’t “wake up” until initiated by the sound of the door.
The voice recognition chip is speaker dependent, which means it will ignore sounds that aren’t within the range of the acoustic signature. The chip was programmed with C. The Smart Latch is not available commercially yet, but the SRNL has made the license available through its technology transfer.
Robots that walk have come a long way from simple barebones walking machines or pairs of legs without an upper body and head. Much of the research these days focuses on making more humanoid robots. But they are not all created equal.
The IEEE Computer Society has named the top 10 trends for 2014. You can expect the convergence of cloud computing and mobile devices, advances in health care data and devices, as well as privacy issues in social media to make the headlines. And 3D printing came out of nowhere to make a big splash.
For industrial control applications, or even a simple assembly line, that machine can go almost 24/7 without a break. But what happens when the task is a little more complex? That’s where the “smart” machine would come in. The smart machine is one that has some simple (or complex in some cases) processing capability to be able to adapt to changing conditions. Such machines are suited for a host of applications, including automotive, aerospace, defense, medical, computers and electronics, telecommunications, consumer goods, and so on. This discussion will examine what’s possible with smart machines, and what tradeoffs need to be made to implement such a solution.