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asbrandsson
09-13-2007, 06:41 PM
Hello,

Currently I am working on putting together a humanoid robot that-

1) has a double knee
http://www.bauerindependents.com/SHOP/robonova_legsbuy.htm

2) gripping hands
http://www.bauerindependents.com/SHOP/robonova_gripsbuy10.htm

3) head like an I-droid

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yHnFgBHXzv4

4)some kind of integrated wifi so that it can be controlled through something like tight vnc

http://www.tightvnc.com/

and 5)a pico-itx computer for a brain.

http://www.mini-itx.com/reviews/pico-itx/

and something similiar to the ER-1 for a personality. I think that a personality model that is behavior based, but also individualized by the end user is cool.

Asbrandsson

Matt
09-14-2007, 11:21 AM
and something similiar to the ER-1 for a personality. I think that a personality model that is behavior based, but also individualized by the end user is cool.Can you expound on this? I'm curious how you are building a personality and I'm not familiar with the ER-1 intimately. I'm super curious about how people are approaching adding personality to robots.

Like I mentioned in the chimp head thread (http://forums.trossenrobotics.com/showthread.php?t=1137&highlight=chimp), I've often thought about using an internet chatbot (like alice) to create a plug in personality. It would work like this:


- Human speaks
- computer turns speech into text
- text is sent to online chatbot
- chatbot replies in text via web
- text is output as speech
- animatronics programs animate a robot head (or chimp head :) )
I think that would be pretty easy to build, yet very impressive to the casual observer. Keep us informed on your project!

asbrandsson
09-14-2007, 10:14 PM
Hello,

I think that the problem with chat bots is that they are basically kind of stupid, not the idea but that they are not very intelligent- although I think that once they get big enough of a data base they have some kind of personality.

The ER-1 is vision based and uses a if/then behaviour based set up- so you can make the Robot whatever you want. It would be nice to create a program that would self generate if then senerios. then without writing an infinite set of if then's a robot could create them itself. I think that alot of the problem with the ER-1 is that is was designed to run off of a labtop and at that time there was not a small powerful portable pc around.

Now I think that if they could make a duo or quad core pico itx mother board and a 100 to 300 gig micro hard drive the market for personal humanoid Robots would be there.

Asbrandsson

Vaughn
09-16-2007, 05:56 AM
I have been working on AI and NLP apps for about 20 years, the biggest problem I have is that VR only works worth a crap when in command mode with a limited vocab. When in dictation mode, recognition is unusable, which is needed in a chatbot application.

My NLP does not have much personality. It is more of a natural query, but what you put in is what you get out. basically it is stuff like this:

i: Liz is my best friend.
i: My best friend's phone number is 913-555-1212.
i: What is Liz's phone number?
r: Liz Woodman's phone number is 913-555-1212.

So not a lot of personality, but when I was a kid and playing with apps like Eliza, I was shocked that it could not process ANY information and could only make stupid remarks that sounded human but were worthless. My idea of a chatbot is more like the computer on Star Trek Next Generation. It can take commands, store information and then recall it in different forms.

Anyways, home automation was only a platform interface to my NLP apps, but I am still working on that platform. I hope to integrate more AI once the basics are done. Sooo I think we could make a chatbot out of any robot, but the vocab would be very limited.

What is needed is a VR system like microsofts but that can accept parameters in the fixed dialog and use dictation to fill in the variable words, so instead of: Who is Vaughn? and Who is Liz? Command recognition would be: Who is PNOUN? Then it would scan all known PNOUNS and try a match against them. Without this, all is futile. I have contemplated hacks, but have not come up with anything.

My current approach is every time a new user is added, for example. I write another VR pattern with the new user name. But this sucks because what should be one pattern "Who is PNOUN" can eat up hundreds of lines of voice recognition phrases...

Someday though!

Vaughn

Matt
09-16-2007, 10:59 PM
I think that the problem with chat bots is that they are basically kind of stupid, not the idea but that they are not very intelligent- although I think that once they get big enough of a data base they have some kind of personality.

Well, sure of course. I merely like the idea because it could be done cheaply and it's a start with what technology is out there. I figured someone out there would have built an AI chat program that was at least a little entertaining, but maybe not. If a system like what I was proposing was built at least it's made in such a way that the backend AI could be swapped out and upgraded as better systems evolve.

There is something to be said about having an actual physical head animating in front of you and responding to your actual voice. Granted, the technology has a looong way to go. But a chimphead chat bot would be a cool school project for some students.

BTW- We just got word on Friday that the chimp head is discontinued :mad:
We may have to save our last one for the TR museum.


The ER-1 is vision based and uses a if/then behaviour based set up- so you can make the Robot whatever you want.

I'm only familiar with the object recognition side of the ER-1. The functionality where you can load up a database of objects to be recognized. I'm not familiar with the if/then part for AI. Is there a link with info on this somewhere?

asbrandsson
09-17-2007, 12:11 AM
Hello,

Evolution Robotics www.evolution.com (http://www.evolution.com) has a part of their site with some demo programs on it. I will try to set up a couple of sreen shots of what it looks like.

One of the problems with vision software is that you need a data base of objects for the Robot to work with. And they have to be object photographed with a neutral background, otherwise the Robot has trouble picking out what the object is actually made up of. Is it a shelf or is the window and the shelf what makes up a shelf. It can recognize a few faces I think that it is something like eleven faces and then it starts to get mixed up. I will have to use something that will determine distance from object as well then it will be easy for the Robot to move around useing only one camera.

Asbrandsson

Vaughn
09-17-2007, 12:55 AM
Yeah, of course! An animated head is an awesome project and I want one. If you watch my Magic Box video( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Emfp-6VGi7U ), I would just run the same system into the head. I am advancing the software even without the head. But the sooner I get one the better! I will have the thing talking, listening and running scripts 2 hours after the Phidget interface is hooked up!

I was just commenting on the limitations of current VR for streaming recognition for applications like chat-bots, translators, interfaces for the hearing imared, or HA interfaces... I completely agree an animated head should not be held up over this limitation.

I definitly was not trying to shoot down the project, just talking about it. :) My approach is just to use it for usefull things like Outlook interfaces, HA Avatar, reading emails, Caller ID announcement, etc. Most of my TTS responses try to be humorous and entertaining, but not in the old school Eliza fashion. I think our visions of what it would do are not far off. Hell, I think my system knows more "Your Mama" jokes than you can find on any single website. :)

I released my software (object code at least) so people are invited to use it for projects like this and I am glad to adapt it for anything. I will post a link in a few days. There is a link on my forums to it, but I used Gagashare.com to host the files, but I am going to wait until I get my own download page in a few days before I start posting the link everywhere else.

I would love to see people able to use my Phidgets interfaces and vCrib in all kinds of projects, and will support anyone who wants to try. I am not ready to release all my source, but if anyone is interested and since it is just modified Phidget code, I would be glad to give out the source for my Phidgets app. Just holla!

Vaughn

Matt
09-17-2007, 01:04 AM
One of the problems with vision software is that you need a data base of objects for the Robot to work with. And they have to be object photographed with a neutral background, otherwise the Robot has trouble picking out what the object is actually made up of. Is it a shelf or is the window and the shelf what makes up a shelf. It can recognize a few faces I think that it is something like eleven faces and then it starts to get mixed up. I will have to use something that will determine distance from object as well then it will be easy for the Robot to move around useing only one camera.
Asbrandsson

You guys should check out Bob Mottram's stuff if you haven't seen it yet. He is doing some amazing stuff just using webcams:
http://sluggish.uni.cc/monoSLAM/monoslam.htm
http://sluggish.uni.cc/rodney/vision.htm
http://code.google.com/p/sentience/

Matt
09-17-2007, 01:14 AM
I released my software (object code at least) so people are invited to use it for projects like this and I am glad to adapt it for anything. I will post a link in a few days. There is a link on my forums to it, but I used Gagashare.com to host the files, but I am going to wait until I get my own download page in a few days before I start posting the link everywhere else.

I would love to see people able to use my Phidgets interfaces and vCrib in all kinds of projects, and will support anyone who wants to try. I am not ready to release all my source, but if anyone is interested and since it is just modified Phidget code, I would be glad to give out the source for my Phidgets app. Just holla!

Vaughn

Thanks for the offer! I've been pondering lately about adding an area to the site where people could profile their projects and leave updates, videos, pics, source files, etc. Sort of a home base for the project so others could stay informed, use the code, grow community around projects, etc.

I envision it as an archive of robotics projects that could house a ton of useful information that is curently scattered all over the web. A community driven archive for robotics. There are probably tools already out there for this and maybe we can figure out a way to seamlessly add them to the site. Something like sourceforge or google code maybe? If people have ideas on this I'd love to hear them.

What do you guys think? Do you think people would use it?

Vaughn
09-18-2007, 12:05 PM
I spoke too soon. How funny! Check out this Product that Engadget pimped this morning that appears to de-validate everything I said about conversational limitations of VR!

http://www.cognitivecode.com/products.html#desktop

This looks awesome, but I wanted to code it! Damn day job is runing my life! =)

Vaughn

Alex
09-24-2007, 11:36 AM
too freakin cool!!

Alex
10-01-2007, 11:25 AM
Flash drives question moved to Brains of my Robot:

http://forums.trossenrobotics.com/showthread.php?t=1195

asbrandsson
10-30-2007, 04:57 PM
Hello,

Here is an update on this project.

I have an ER-1, just bought a Robonova-1 and I-droid off of E-bay. I need to buy a lot of material for the Robonova

1) Gyros
2) 7.4 V lith poly batteries with a 6 volt regualtor
3) grippers
4) double knees

once the I-Droid is here I can get to work proto-typing an I-droid head to put on the Robonova.

But hey all things in due time.

Asbrandsson

asbrandsson
11-07-2007, 10:09 PM
Hello,

I got my Robonova today. Now I am just going to spend some time getting to how to control it and upgrading it with better parts like gyros, an i-droid head, double knees and grippers.

Asbrandsson

Alex
11-08-2007, 08:50 AM
Nice! Keep us posted asbrandsson:)

If you get all of these mods added on there and working by the end of the month and a video of it in action, be sure to submit it in this month's contest!

asbrandsson
11-13-2007, 12:27 PM
Hello,

I will try.

Asbrandsson

asbrandsson
12-04-2007, 11:20 PM
Hello,

Today I got an OQO 01 off of e-bay that I am going to use for the brain and vision of my modified Robonova.

http://www.oqo.com/index.html

If the 01 series model proves to be useful and functional enough to encorporate into my project I think that I will buy a model two.

I think that if I put a bluetooth module on the Robonova I could use the ER-1 "run program" function to get the robot to explore its environment and perform various tasks.

Asbrandsson

Alex
12-05-2007, 09:14 AM
that's a pretty incredible mini computer!

It's pretty sad when I see a computer this small that is more powerful than my computer at home. I've been avoiding it, but I guess it really is time for me to get a new desktop;)

asbrandsson
12-05-2007, 05:57 PM
Hello,

If this OQO 1+ that I bought works out I am going to upgrade to the 2 with the 1.6 gig processor and 120g hard drive. It should be enough of a computer to give the robot some autonmy.

Asbrandsson

Alex
12-07-2007, 11:27 AM
120G HD? What on earth do you have planned for this bot? I hope you're not loading it up with automatic peppergun turret arms (http://forums.trossenrobotics.com/showthread.php?t=1281) with vision and sending it over my way;)

kdwyer
12-07-2007, 11:52 AM
120G HD? What on earth do you have planned for this bot? I hope you're not loading it up with automatic peppergun turret arms (http://forums.trossenrobotics.com/showthread.php?t=1281) with vision and sending it over my way;)

... and lasers and passive infrared motion detection and breathalyzers and a 12 piece orchestra and a spaghetti maker and weasel repellant and a zircon-encrusted plasma chamber and ...

You get the idea.

asbrandsson
12-14-2007, 09:43 PM
Hello,

I just ordered double knees and grippers from Bauer Independents. Now I just need to get a tilt sensor and a couple of gyros, and then it will be ready for programing and hopefully not far from autonomous exploration.

Asbrandsson

asbrandsson
12-14-2007, 11:04 PM
Hello,

I came across a project that mirrors close to what I am working on now.

http://translate.google.com/translate?u=http%3A%2F%2Fdigilander.libero.it%2Fle paginedichiccow%2FI-droid01%2FProgetti%2FUmanoide.html&langpair=it%7Cen&hl=en&ie=UTF8

Although it seems the end result built here is very stripped down I think that the concept is definitely good.

Asbrandsson

asbrandsson
12-16-2007, 08:46 PM
Hello,

I just bought a copy of ERSP SDK 2.0 off of e-bay.

http://www.roboticsonline.com/buyers_guide/newproducts/details.cfm?id=258

This version of ERSP was released in 2003, which makes it dated in some respects, well it seems like many respects. But it should make a good start for developing an autonmous humanoid robot.

Asbrandsson

Alex
12-17-2007, 04:12 PM
Doesn't this robot already have grippers? In the one pic, it looks like it has hands...

Hope that ERSP works out for ya! I've heard really good, and some not so good things about it. Overall, most people I've talked to liked it:) Either way, keep us posted with your experience! Better yet, start your own blog in the TR Community with all of your latest news on it.

http://forums.trossenrobotics.com/blog.php

asbrandsson
12-17-2007, 04:26 PM
Hello,

The robot has a gripper, but the arm only moves up and down at the shoulder. It moves buy a motor and a series of gears, which I find works well with the head and neck, but not so well on the rest of it.

I hope the ERSP 2.0 works well also. I would like to bridge the gap between it and the roboscript with something that will say if - then bow or walk forward one step or climb stairs, etc. Plus from what I can tell there is no learning curve- the robot will only know what I tell it. Basically the robot knows what you tell it to know. But lets face it that is the hundred million dollar robot question.

Asbrandsson

Alex
12-17-2007, 04:30 PM
with something that will say if - then bow or walk forward one step or climb stairs, etc.

Man, I'd love to see the day when robotics programming gets to be as simple (and universal) as that!

asbrandsson
12-17-2007, 06:39 PM
Hello,

The General User Interface for the ER-1 has an if side and a then side - the then side has a run program section. Which is how I was going to give the robot some mobility. I just have to figure out how to run sequences on the robonova as a program. Instead of through the remote.

I was also practicing writing some basic moves for the robonova using the robobasic script today- like making him clap his hands. I am surprised how simple it is to create moves for the robonova. Just with a couple of gyros and a tilt sensor the Robonova is only brains and vision away from autonomy.

Asbrandsson

Alex
12-18-2007, 02:39 PM
When you get some code written up, post some here! I'd love to check it out a bit:)

Yeah, I was pretty surprised too when I finally was able to check out the Robonova and it's coding. It is pretty easy! I haven't played around with autonomous actions yet though.

asbrandsson
12-18-2007, 05:43 PM
Hello,

I need to create a series of programs that will run over the serial com connection with my Robonova that will work as a kind of remote. I want to do this because the ER-1 interface has a run program function. I think that I could create an infinite number of K commands (as I believe the remote can only handle k1 through k32 as that is the number of buttons on the remote) then basically I could use the er-1 interface as a means of getting the RN to explore.

I would like to learn to write the code myself, but I do not know where to start.

asbrandsson

asbrandsson
01-29-2008, 09:18 AM
Hello,

I am looking into using this motherboard as a brain for my Robot-

http://www.commell.com.tw/Product/SBC/LS-372.HTM

It is pretty small @ 3.5" wide and 5.7" long and can be outfitted with a core 2 duo processor. Which I think will give the robot the processing power it needs.

I have a good contact for CNC work now and I am just bought a ten pack of the 8498 Servos. Once I have the mother board and some kind of lithium poly battery system worked out I am going to work the bolt pattern out using AutoCad and have a proto-type body built.

Tentatively I would like to go with a 2.5" Solid State Hard Drive

http://www.innodisk.com.tw/

You have to look around this site to see the Solid State Drive that they sell as there is no direct link. However, they are selling a 128 Gig Solid State Hard Drive. I am just waiting for a price back.

Basically, I am thinking about mounting the Mother Board on the chest, the Hard Drive and servo controller in the middle and the battery on the back. I am not sure how well it will balance out, but I will definitely have to use a couple of Gyros so that it will not fall over.

The double knees from Bauer Indi showed up as well. He has a new system out now which seems to work for installing double knees and double elbows. So once I have the dimensions of the body worked out I am going to look at installing the double elbows as well.

Asbrandsson

JonHylands
01-29-2008, 09:38 AM
You're going to run into major problems with those servos. They are basically at the limit (torque) with the robonova, and you're adding all kinds of weight with double-knees/elbows/grippers/computer.

I would recommend you look at some of the 400 oz-in servos if you want to build a humanoid with that many features...

- Jon

Alex
01-29-2008, 11:33 AM
and you're adding all kinds of weight with double-knees/elbows/grippers/computer.

Agreed! Although it seems ideal to have a humanoid with a computer onboard, it's just not practical. You need to power a computer and chances are you can't use something as small as the battery pack that is on the Robonova.

If you want an onboard "brain", go with either a Gumstix, Hammer or something similar. I'm not going on my own personal experience with these boards. This is just what everyone uses when they want to put some brains on their humanoids. This is due to many reasons I'm sure many of our community members can share (again, no personal experience here, just experience from seeing many different humanoids).

Hope that helps ya out a bit Asbrandsson:)

asbrandsson
01-29-2008, 02:24 PM
Hello,

I think that there will be some servos that I will have to upgrade, like the shoulders. Which I would do regardless as the standard servos that come with a robonova have a limited range of travel and I would like a servo that has a greater range, especially in the shoulder.

With the double knees that Bauer is producing-

http://www.bauerindependents.com/docs/RP3LK4022X_Manual.pdf

you can make the Robonova jump with the standard servos

http://www.bauerindependents.com/SUBMAIN/Video_DualKnee.htm

So the legs might not need anything more then what they already have. Plus I just called the guys at Hitec Robotics and they seem to think that the 8498's will work just fine, but I could upgrade them to the 5498 if the need is there.

http://www.robonova.com/manager/product.php?send_cateSeqid=15&send_prdSeqid=7

However, I also think that when I velcroed a OQO 1+ to the front of the robonova I have it operates no differant then without it. And basically what I want to add will be a lot lighter then the OQO 1+ as a 2.5" Flash Hard Drive weighs one tenth that of a conventional hard drive and I will not use a keyboard or screen. I also think that a Li-pol battery system is the lightest system which also provides the most amp hours of use.

Only time will tell at this point.

Asbrandsson

kdwyer
01-29-2008, 05:14 PM
Lithium has an energy density that is off the charts. Also a cost that is off the charts.
Replace some NiMh with the same weight in lithiums and you've just added ALOT of amp-hours.
(I was told the donor organs will grow back...)

asbrandsson
02-01-2008, 06:26 AM
Hello,

My ten pack of Hitec 8498s showed up yesterday. I just have to pick them up and get to installing them. I should be posting some pics tonight or tommorrow.

Asbrandsson