Tidying-up robot for home use unveiled

Preferred Networks Inc (PFN), which specializes in artificial intelligence, has developed a fully-autonomous tidying-up robot system that uses advanced deep learning technology. The robot was displayed at the Combined Exhibition of Advanced Technologies (CEATEC).

PFN said on its website that the robot is the first of its kind that can automatically keep a cluttered room neat and tidy at a practical level, something that has been difficult to achieve using conventional robot system. As a result, the robot is able to quickly and accurately grasp and place objects, how to plan its movements, follow human instructions, all of which are essential for a robot to work in the human living space.

The robot is around 100 to 135 centimeters tall and weighs about 37 kilograms.

The robot features a camera on the top of it that enables it to recognize objects scattered in a room such as socks, toys and stationery. Moving at a maximum speed of 800 meters per hour, it uses a folding arm to pick up and place such materials in designated locations.

To date, robots have been used mainly in factories. In factory lines, robots usually handle limited types of items that are always brought right in front of them enabling them to work fast and precisely.

On the other hand, personal robots need to handle a great variety of items in the living space while easily responding to complex and dynamic situations. PFN has developed a computer vision engine based on advanced deep learning technology, which enables the robot to identify the type and location of each object among several hundred types of objects scattered in a room.

Based on the engine, the robot can plan which object to pick up and how to grasp and put it back.

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