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Thursday, January 23, 2014

RoboEarth Project Aims To Build Cloud for Robots

January 21, 2014

The RoboEarth project aims to build a cloud computing platform for robotics. After four years of research, scientists at
 Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e), Philips and four other European universities will present this online platform through which robots can learn new skills from each other worldwide.

A new project aims to connect the world’s robots so they will be able to learn from each other and from their human interactions.

It is part to a €5.6m ($7.6m) European Union research project known as 
RoboEarth. The work is a collaboration between six European universities and Philips, the Dutch electronics company.

The project seeks to create robots’ very own cloud: a vast network, database and computation engine “where robots can share information and learn from each other about their behavior and their environment.”

RoboEarth, then, is 
cloud storage and computing for robots: its database is intended to store knowledge created by both humans and robots in a robot-readable open format. To date, that knowledge is basic: maps to help mobile robots navigate; task information like how to pick up a cup; and object-recognitiondata such as digital models of real-world objects.

The system also lets robots offload some of their computational tasks to “a powerful and secure” cloud-computing engine.

Most robots today perform discrete, pre-programmed tasks related to a small set of objects in a controlled environment. Some already use data-sharing systems, although almost all are proprietary. For example, the “autonomous robots” made by 
Kiva Systems, which is owned by online retailer Amazon, pool data about the constantly changing warehouses in which they operate, enabling them to navigate and work more efficiently.

The challenge, notes Markus Waibel of the 
Institute for Dynamic Systems and Control in Zurich, and one of the scientists behind RoboEarth, is that the “nuanced and complicated” nature of life outside these controlled environments cannot be defined by a limited set of specifications. In other words, to perform complex and useful tasks in the unstructured world in which humans actually live, robots will need to share knowledge and learn from each other’s experiences. They will also have to learn patterns that humans take for granted. For example, milk is usually kept in a refrigerator; the strange objects next to plates are usually knives and forks; glass objects break easily; and so on. In short, they will have to evolve and adapt to the real world, and do so autonomously.

Related articles
 RoboEarth Project

RoboEarth’s proof-of-concept demonstration is simple for humans, but hard for robots: serve fruit juice to a random patient in a hospital bed. In a fake hospital room at Eindhoven Technical University in the Netherlands, one robot mapped out the space, located the “patient’s” bed and a nearby carton of juice, then sent that data to RoboEarth’s cloud.

A second robot, accessing the data supplied by robot number one, unerringly picked up the juice and carried it to the bed. Unfortunately this test did not end in total success as Amigo then dropped the milk to the floor after delivering it to the bed-ridden patient.. But as Dr Waibel—who was the “patient” in question—points out, the demonstration still proved its point.

RoboEarth and a handful of similar initiatives, including Google’s 
cloud-robotics ROS platform, do, however, raise some questions.

As with many internet of things developments, security is variable, and physical machines that work alongside people in the real world will be tempting targets. Although RoboEarth’s cloud may itself be secure, it will take only one vulnerable node (robot) for hackers to gain control—a scary thought in a world where robots might be care-givers with access to private medical information and other personal data.

Lee Tien, a senior attorney at the 
Electronic Frontier Foundation, which seeks to protect individual rights in a digital world, worries that the fundamental requirements of projects such as RoboEarth—the collection, storage and sharing of as much data as possible—are at odds with the goal of “privacy by design” that many policymakers now support. If a robot is caring for a sick or elderly person, what happens if there is a family dispute over that care? Or a contentious divorce? Is all the robo-cloud data simply up for grabs by whomever manages to obtain or subpoena it? “The number of safeguards that will need to be put in place is staggering”, Tien told the Economist.

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How to Digitally Record/Video a UFO sighting:

Como registar digitalmente ou gravar um vídeo de um avistamento de um UFO:

Stabilize the camera on a tripod. If there is no tripod, then set it on top of a stable, flat surface. If that is not possible lean against a wall to stabilize your body and prevent the camera from filming in a shaky, unsteady manner.

Estabilize a camera com um tripé. Se não tiver um tripé, então coloque-a em cima de uma superfície estável. Se não for possível, então encoste-se a uma parede para estabilizar o corpo e evitar que a camera registe de maneira tremida e instável.

Provide visual reference points for comparison. This includes the horizon, treetops, lampposts, houses, and geographical landmarks (i.e., Horsetooth Reservoir, Mt. Adams, etc.) Provide this in the video whenever is appropriate and doesn’t detract from what your focus is, the UFO.

Forneça pontos visuais de referência para comparação. Isso inclui o horizonte, cimo das árvores, postes de iluminação, pontos de referência geográficos (como o Reservatório de Horsetooth, Mone Adams, etc) Forneça esses pontos no vídeo sempre que for apropriado e não se distraia do que é o seu foco, o UFO/a Nave.

Narrate your videotape. Provide details of the date, time, location, and direction (N,S,E,W) you are looking in. Provide your observations on the weather, including approximate temperature, windspeed, any visible cloud cover or noticeable weather anomalies or events. Narrate on the shape, size, color, movements, approximate altitude of the UFO, etc and what it appears to be doing. Also include any unusual physical, psychological or emotional sensations you might have. Narrate any visual reference points on camera so they correlate with what the viewer will see, and thereby will be better able to understand.

Faça a narração do vídeo. Forneça pormenores sobre a data, hora, local e direcção (Norte, Sul, Este, Oeste) que está a observar. Faça observações sobre as condições atmosféricas, incluindo a temperatura aproximada, velocidade do vento, quantidade de nuvens, anomalias ou acontecimentos meteorológicos evidentes. Descreva a forma, o tamanho, a cor, os movimentos, a altitude aproximada onde se encontra o UFO/nave, etc e o que aparenta estar a fazer. Inclua também quaisquer aspectos pouco habituais de sensações físicas, psicológicas ou emocionais que possa ter. Faça a narração de todos os pontos de referência visual que o espectador irá ver e que, deste modo, será capaz de compreender melhor.

Be persistent and consistent. Return to the scene to videotape and record at this same location. If you have been successful once, the UFO sightings may be occurring in this region regularly, perhaps for specific reasons unknown, and you may be successful again. You may also wish to return to the same location at a different time of day (daylight hours) for better orientation and reference. Film just a minute or two under “normal” circumstances for comparison. Write down what you remember immediately after. As soon as you are done recording the experience/event, immediately write down your impressions, memories, thoughts, emotions, etc. so it is on the record in writing. If there were other witnesses, have them independently record their own impressions, thoughts, etc. Include in this exercise any drawings, sketches, or diagrams. Make sure you date and sign your documentation.

Seja persistente e não contraditório. Volte ao local da cena e registe o mesmo local. Se foi bem sucedido uma vez, pode ser que nessa região ocorram avistamentos de UFOs/naves com regularidade, talvez por razões específicas desconhecidas, e talvez possa ser novamente bem sucedido. Pode também desejar voltar ao mesmo lugar a horas diferentes do dia (durante as horas de luz)para ter uma orientação e referência melhor. Filme apenas um ,inuto ou dois em circunstâncias “normais” para ter um termo de comparação. Escreva tudo o que viu imediatamente após o acontecimento. Logo após ter feito o registo da experiência/acontecimento, escreva imediatamente as impressões, memórias, pensamentos, emoções, etc para que fiquem registadas por escrito. Se houver outras testemunhas, peça-lhes para registar independentemente as suas próprias impressões, pensamentos, etc. Inclua quaisquer desenhos, esbolos, diagramas. Certifique-se que data e assina o seu documento/testemunho.

Always be prepared. Have a digital camera or better yet a video camera with you, charged and ready to go, at all times. Make sure you know how to use your camera (and your cell phone video/photo camera) quickly and properly. These events can occur suddenly, unexpectedly, and often quite randomly, so you will need to be prepared.

Esteja sempre preparado, Tenha sempre uma camera digital, melhor ainda, uma camera vídeo consigo, carregada e pronta a usar sempre que necessário. Certifique-se que sabe como lidar com a sua camera (ou com o seu celular/camera fotográfica) rápida e adequadamente. Esses acontecimentos podem acontecer súbita e inesperadamente e, por vezes, acidentalmente, por isso, necessita estar preparado.

Look up. Be prepared. Report. Share.

Olhe para cima, Esteja preparado, Relate, Partilhe.



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NGC - UFO's in EUROPE (Porugal included)

FEBRUARY 7, 2013 - 7:00PM EST

FEBRUARY 7, 2013 - 7:00PM EST