The Robotics Institute

Carnegie Mellon Robotics Institute

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Robot Invites Humans to Play Mean Game of SCRABBLE
March 25, 2014. Carnegie Mellon University researchers have developed a SCRABBLE-playing robot to explore what will cause people to engage with robots for extended periods and to enjoy it. The project anticipates the day when humans and robots will interact routinely at work and at home.
Robot Butler Preparing For Stage Debut This Spring
March 05, 2014. HERB, the Home Exploring Robot Butler, is no thespian. He's a mobile, two-armed robot that serves as a testbed for software and technologies that will someday enable robots to assist people in their homes. Nevertheless, HERB will appear this spring in "All in the Timing," a collection of plays by David Ives, and ETC student Katie Correll is part of a team preparing the robot for his stage debut.
Time Lapse GigaPan Holds Promise for Plant Research
March 04, 2014. Research by scientists at the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Robotics Institute shows that high-resolution, time-lapse photography, such as GigaPan Time Machine, can help scientists study plant behavior over vast scales outside of the laboratory.
The Robots That Saved Pittsburgh
February 04, 2014. "The Robots That Saved Pittsburgh," an article in the latest issue of Politico magazine, highlights the role of the Robotics Institute in the rebirth of Pittsburgh following the collapse of the steel industry.
DARPA Selects Tartan Rescue Team For 2014 Robotics Challenge Funding
December 21, 2013. The Tartan Rescue Team from Carnegie Mellon University’s National Robotics Engineering Center ranked third among teams competing in the DARPA Robotics Challenge Trials this weekend in Homestead, Fla., and was selected by the agency as one of eight teams eligible for DARPA funding to prepare for next December’s Finals.
CMU Roboticists Join Team WRECS for DARPA Robotics Challenge
December 17, 2013. The Tartan Rescue Team and its CHIMP robot will be Carnegie Mellon University’s most visible presence at the DARPA Robotics Challenge (DRC) Trials in Homestead, Fla., Dec. 20-21, but CMU also will play an important role on a second participant, Team WRECS, based at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI). Chris Atkeson, professor of robotics, and 10 current or recent CMU grad students and postdocs, are part of WPI’s Robotics Engineering C Squad (WRECS).
CHIMP Robot Prepares For DARPA Robotics Challenge Trials
December 13, 2013. It’s only been a few weeks since Carnegie Mellon University’s National Robotics Engineering Center (NREC) completed assembly of its four-limbed CHIMP robot, but the Tartan Rescue Team has high hopes for the robot’s performance at the DARPA Robotics Challenge (DRC) Trials Dec. 20-21. “We’ve been on a fast track for the past year, doing detailed design and development of CHIMP at the same time as we were writing and testing its software on surrogate hardware,” said Tony Stentz, NREC director and leader of the Tartan Rescue Team.
Computer Searches Web 24/7 To Analyze Images and Teach Itself Common Sense
November 20, 2013. A computer program called the Never Ending Image Learner (NEIL) is running 24 hours a day at Carnegie Mellon University, searching the Web for images, doing its best to understand them on its own and, as it builds a growing visual database, gathering common sense on a massive scale.
Dragan Receives Intel PhD Fellowship
November 05, 2013. Anca Dragan, a Ph.D student in the Robotics Institute since 2009, is one of 15 U.S. students chosen for the 2013-2014 Intel PhD Fellowship Program. She is a member of the Personal Robotics Laboratory led by Sidd Srinivasa, associate professor of robotics.
Curiosity Completes Two-Day Drive Using CMU Navigation Software
October 31, 2013. Using autonomous navigation software first developed at Carnegie Mellon University’s Robotics Institute, NASA’s Mars rover Curiosity this week completed its first two-day autonomous drive, a new technique that enables the mobile laboratory to cover ground faster.
Story Collider Podcast Features Victor Hwang
October 28, 2013. Story Collider, a national storytelling project, has posted a podcast featuring Victor Hwang, a masters student in the Robotics Institute, talking about his experience preparing computer code for a NASA spacecraft. He was one of five Carnegie Mellon students to share their stories about science at an Oct. 21 show at the Rex Theater sponsored by Story Collider and Public Communication for Researchers.
CMU and Buffalo Researchers Improving Transportation Access for People With Disabilities
October 28, 2013. Researchers at Carnegie Mellon University and the University at Buffalo, State University of New York, are collaborating on a five-year, $4.6 million federally funded project to advance physical access and public transportation for people with disabilities by bringing together computer science technology and the principles of universal design.
The Verge Visits "Robot City"
October 24, 2013. The website The Verge recently visited Pittsburgh to find out why it has become the Robot City. The site has now posted an article and a video Robot City: How the Machines Are Driving Pittsburgh's Future, which includes interviews with Sidd Srinivasa, Red Whittaker, Howie Choset and other members of the Robotics Institute.
Popular Mechanics Names RI’s Michael Among “Innovators Who Changed the World”
October 14, 2013. Nathan Michael, assistant research professor of robotics, was part of a team at Penn cited by Popular Mechanics as one of “Ten Innovators Who Changed The World in 2013.” The Penn team, led by Vijay Kumar, is developing tiny quadrotors that can autonomously fly in squadrons to map and assess dangerously compromised buildings.
Wilkinsburg students to screen documentary on their town
August 22, 2013. The CREATE Lab’s Hear Me 101 project this summer helped Wilkinsburg students produce a short documentary, “Wilkinsburg: The Way We See It,” which the students will screen at 6 p.m. Monday at Hosanna House, 807 Wallace Ave., Wilkinsburg.
HERB Wins Top Honors at Robot Film Festival
July 29, 2013. “Do Robots Dream of Cookies?” a video starring the Robotics Institute’s HERB, the Home Exploring Robot Butler, won top honors at the Robot Film Festival July 20-21 in San Francisco. The video features HERB’s newly acquired ability to separate Oreo cookies and was created as an online component of this year’s “Cookie vs. Creme” advertising campaign for the popular brand.
CMDragons Take Chinese Team Down to the Wire in RoboCup Final
July 02, 2013. The CMDragons, Carnegie Mellon University’s team in the RoboCup small-size league, performed impressively in the finals of the RoboCup 2013 world championship on June 30 in Eindhoven, The Netherlands, before finally falling to the ZJUNlict team from China’s Zhejiang University by the narrowest of margins in a shoot out.
Blue Belt Technologies Wins FDA Clearance
June 26, 2013. Blue Belt Technologies, a Carnegie Mellon spinoff that includes a number of School of Computer Science alumni and faculty members, has received FDA clearance to market its NavioPFS™ orthopedic surgical system. It is the first spinoff of the Center for Technology Transfer and Enterprise Creations (CTTEC) to receive such clearance.
Zoë Returns To Atacama On NASA Mission To Search for Subsurface Life
June 11, 2013. The autonomous, solar-powered Zoë, which became the first robot to map microbial life during a 2005 field expedition in Chile’s Atacama Desert, is heading back to the world’s driest desert this month on a NASA astrobiology mission led by Carnegie Mellon University and the SETI Institute. This time, Zoë is equipped with a one-meter drill to search for subsurface life.
Startup by RI Alums Gets High-Profile Spot at Apple WWDC
June 11, 2013. Anki, a robotics startup founded by a trio of Robotics Institute alumni, emerged from stealth mode to announce its first product during one of the highest profile events in the tech world: the keynote of Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference June 10 in San Francisco.