The MIT works on assistive robots that adapt to people. Humanoid robot Domo is the current state at the MIT of an assistive robot that can help people in the household.
Aaron Edsinger, an MIT postdoctoral associate has been working on Domo for the last 3 years. Domo can "see" what is going on in front of him. As the robot's large blue eyes roam across the room, cameras feed information to 12 computers that analyze the input and decide what to focus on. Domo can recognize humans and react to voice commands like finding a shelf.
Domo can take things from Edsinger which he then places on the shelf.
The big deal is that Domo needs to figure out by himself how to grab stuff and then put it on the shelf. Currently he needs 12 computers to do that though. For Domo or any robot to safely interact with humans, the robot has to be able to sense when a human is touching it. Domo has springs in its arms, hands and neck that can sense force and respond to it. If you grab its hand and push, the robot will move the way you want it to.
More details about Domo can be found on the MIT site. It is still a long way to make an assistive robot like the robotic maid Rosie from the Jetsons. It is good to see that the US is also making advances in Humanoid robots and not just Japan and Korea.
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