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Rob Spiegel
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Nice video
Rob Spiegel   6/28/2013 8:55:01 AM
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Nice posting, Elizabeth. Fire fighting seems to be a big area for robot development these days. In many ways it's similar to developments in the military. I wonder if the military is making any of its technol,logy available for this type of application.

TJ McDermott
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Re: Nice video
TJ McDermott   6/28/2013 10:21:00 AM
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The robot is fascinating, and the video demonstrates some impressive software (the 3D pont cloud was amazing), but I frankly did not understand the final segment of it.  The robot runs into a wall, falls over, and explodes?  Kinda defeated the message up to that point.

Or am I missing something?

Charles Murray
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Re: Nice video
Charles Murray   6/28/2013 6:06:01 PM
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I, too, was baffled by the explosion at the end of the video, TJ. Makes for an interesting climax, but it doesn't really make sense.

Elizabeth M
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Re: Nice video
Elizabeth M   7/1/2013 8:24:28 AM
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I think the end of the video was just a demonstration of the sense of the humor of the inventors...probably not really so funny, but I guess they wanted the video to end with a "bang," literally, not a whimper. Probably could have done without it! But it's still quite effective to see the robot in action before the grand finale.

jmiller
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Platinum
Re: Nice video
jmiller   6/30/2013 10:08:17 AM
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I really like to read articles where technology is taken from one arena and put into another. It's that outside of the box, forget following the rules type of thinking that I find really fun to watch.

Charles Murray
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Clever center leg
Charles Murray   6/28/2013 6:09:05 PM
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What a clever way this robot has of climbing stairs, using the actuated center leg.

TJ McDermott
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Re: Clever center leg
TJ McDermott   6/28/2013 9:03:14 PM
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The center leg, combined with the wheels spinning as reaction wheels to maintain balance. WAY COOL Charles!

taimoortariq
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Gold
Segway robot
taimoortariq   6/29/2013 1:54:18 AM
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Its nice to see a segway robot contributing to the society other than transport uses. Quite an innovative idea, although i cannot see the video due to some reason, but i do hope the speed and control of this semi autonomus robot is fast and robust, because even a small amount of lag or delay might be fatal for citizens.

Debera Harward
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Silver
Re: Segway robot
Debera Harward   6/29/2013 6:07:40 AM
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Its really very nice and interesting to watch robots helping humans. Idea is very innovative and thought provoking this robot can give a clear image of what is happening inside the burning building and with this information fire brigade people can take precautionary measures . This is a very big help for fire brigade people.

notarboca
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Gold
Re: Segway robot
notarboca   6/30/2013 1:50:00 AM
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Innovative and well thought out.  This design is guaranteed to save someone's life; might be a firefighter or a potential victim, but it is going to work some time in the future.

jmiller
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Platinum
Re: Segway robot
jmiller   6/30/2013 10:09:20 AM
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I wonder where else it might be useful.  I think of search and rescue operations and things like that. 

Elizabeth M
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Re: Segway robot
Elizabeth M   7/1/2013 5:23:48 AM
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Definitely I think this could also be a good application for search and rescue, too, jmiller. The military has been working on similar type robots, though not Segway-scooter style. But I think this is quite a practical approach and a good use of that design form, which I think personally is quite silly as a mode of transport for people.

jmiller
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Re: Segway robot
jmiller   7/28/2013 3:46:24 PM
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I haven't seen a lot of people using the segway as a mode of transportation.  I think the only people I have seen use them were police.  And I was in no way intimidated by a cop on a Segway.

Elizabeth M
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Re: Segway robot
Elizabeth M   7/30/2013 6:17:18 AM
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Yes, police on Segways are hardly intimidating, jmiller, I agree. I don't live in the U.S. anymore and I don't see anyone on Segways here in Europe, not even recreationally. When I lived in San Francisco there were Segway tours near the bay, but that's really the only place I've seen these machines being used. So I think adapting it for a good use robotically is a great idea.

jmiller
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Platinum
Re: Segway robot
jmiller   9/30/2013 8:26:06 PM
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I like the idea of using them for walking tours. There are lots of people and lots of places where walking could be a challenge. I guess I'm surprised we don't see this more often.

NadineJ
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Re: Segway robot
NadineJ   9/30/2013 10:15:25 PM
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@jmiller-Segway tours are very popular here in San Francisco.  It's almost adorable to see a group of 6-10 adults with bicycles helmets roaming through Golden Gate Park.  I've also seen many police officers use them at big events.

Elizabeth M
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Re: Segway robot
Elizabeth M   10/1/2013 10:14:31 AM
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The Segways have been good for that, jmiller, and now I think there will be more instances of applications of Segways in places where, as you mention, it's hard for people to walk. For things like fires and disaster-recovery--like the rubble of earthquakes--I think they can be adapted in very useful ways.

jmiller
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Platinum
Re: Segway robot
jmiller   10/27/2013 8:33:13 AM
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I can see it now. A seqway with monster struck wheels.  In all seriousness though, I thought I saw a segwa with tracks somewhere.  I have seen more and more development of tracks fro anything from tractors to trucks lately.

Elizabeth M
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Re: Segway robot
Elizabeth M   7/16/2013 4:33:10 AM
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I agree, jmiller, it's good to see researchers applying one technology to a different use. In this case, I think it's an even better use, as the Segway itself (in my opinion) was a pretty silly thing as a people mover. But in this case, it could really be worthwhile. I'm sure search and rescue also could be a good option, with the robot identifying where there might be survivors in rubble who need rescuing in the case of earthquakes, building collapses etc.

Charles Murray
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Re: Segway robot
Charles Murray   7/19/2013 6:43:23 PM
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I recall a company called Vecna Technologies that built a battlefield extraction robot, called the Bear, similar to this one.

http://www.designnews.com/document.asp?doc_id=217033

jmiller
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Platinum
Re: Segway robot
jmiller   7/28/2013 3:57:43 PM
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I live in a rural area and technology like this could be very helpful in locating lost children.

Elizabeth M
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Re: Segway robot
Elizabeth M   7/30/2013 6:21:33 AM
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That's an interesting idea, jmiller. How do you think they could be used for this purpose? I would think that would be a very difficult thing to do.

Cabe Atwell
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Re: Segway robot
Cabe Atwell   7/31/2013 7:20:59 PM
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I agree with taimoortariq in regards of speed being a key factor in a fire where every second counts. My question is how long does it take to garner a complete image of a locations interior? 

Elizabeth M
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Re: Segway robot
Elizabeth M   8/1/2013 7:53:42 AM
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Good question, I will have to check on that, Cabe. I can't imagine it would take very long, as it would probably be quite dangerous for the robot to stay in the building for an extended period of time.

jmiller
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Platinum
Re: Segway robot
jmiller   9/30/2013 8:34:06 PM
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In the central part of the U.S. where I am searching for missing children is usually done walking miles and miles.  I think the segway could be useful in helping people or robots go further and faster.

jmiller
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Platinum
Re: Segway robot
jmiller   9/30/2013 8:34:07 PM
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In the central part of the U.S. where I am searching for missing children is usually done walking miles and miles.  I think the segway could be useful in helping people or robots go further and faster.

Battar
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Platinum
Can't take the heat
Battar   7/1/2013 8:45:02 AM
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I would assume that the robot has temperature sensors in the electronics box and is programmed to scoot out of harms way when the internal temperature is too hot for the battery/psu circuits. From what I know of such environments, it wouldn't be able to operate for long before overheating, and it would have to be constantly aware of which direction cooler air lies.

William K.
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Platinum
The segway style firfighting robot.
William K.   7/1/2013 7:20:44 PM
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This is quite an interesting concept, and I am especially impressed with the way that leg boosts it up over things and works for climbing steps. But the package in the video would not last even a minute in a really hot area, so I hope that what we are seeing is just the demonstration of concept version. The real thing will need to have a lot of protection from radiant heat as well as from a hostile environment. 

But it certainly does appear to be an invention with a god bit of potential usefulness.

Elizabeth M
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Blogger
Re: The segway style firfighting robot.
Elizabeth M   7/2/2013 5:24:36 AM
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That feature is quite impressive, William K, and point taken about its ability to sustain hot temperatures. But I think the researchers are working to fire proof it so this particular robot wouldn't go into a fire without some serious thermal protection.

bobjengr
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Platinum
ROBOT AND BURNING BUILDINGS
bobjengr   7/13/2013 6:18:54 PM
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Very interesting post Elizabeth.  I have a neighbor who retired as the chief of fire for a small city outside Chattanooga.  He told me the most feared circumstance was working fires in buildings that contained chemicals or paint.  This (of course) was due to the toxic nature of the substances.  Older building also pose a great threat to the safety of the fire fighters.  This device would be an excellent solution to that problem.  Sensors detecting gasses as well as temperature would be a definite value-added to this men and women who fight these fires.  I wonder if there are microphones installed to detect movement or sounds from trapped individuals in the building.  Great post.

 

Elizabeth M
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Re: ROBOT AND BURNING BUILDINGS
Elizabeth M   7/16/2013 4:30:58 AM
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Thank you, bobjengr. I personally do really like the stories best that focus on technology that can really have an effect on people and potentially help people's lives or even save them. This is a case of the latter. Fighting fires is incredibly dangerous, as we just saw in Arizona where those firefighters died. While this of course wouldn't hep in that situation, it would, as you point out, be very helpful to protect firefighters in the case of dangerous chemicals or other scenarios where a preemptive scan of the area could be the difference between life and death.



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