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Tue Jun 19, 2012, 06:17 AM

 

Robots Get a Feel for the World: Touch More Sensitve Than a Human's

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/06/120618194952.htm

ScienceDaily (June 18, 2012) — What does a robot feel when it touches something? Little or nothing until now. But with the right sensors, actuators and software, robots can be given the sense of feel -- or at least the ability to identify different materials by touch.


Like the human finger, the group's BioTac® sensor has a soft, flexible skin over a liquid filling. (Credit: USC)

Researchers at the University of Southern California's Viterbi School of Engineering published a study June 18 in Frontiers in Neurorobotics showing that a specially designed robot can outperform humans in identifying a wide range of natural materials according to their textures, paving the way for advancements in prostheses, personal assistive robots and consumer product testing.

The robot was equipped with a new type of tactile sensor built to mimic the human fingertip. It also used a newly designed algorithm to make decisions about how to explore the outside world by imitating human strategies. Capable of other human sensations, the sensor can also tell where and in which direction forces are applied to the fingertip and even the thermal properties of an object being touched.

snip>
Like the human finger, the group's BioTac® sensor has a soft, flexible skin over a liquid filling. The skin even has fingerprints on its surface, greatly enhancing its sensitivity to vibration. As the finger slides over a textured surface, the skin vibrates in characteristic ways. These vibrations are detected by a hydrophone inside the bone-like core of the finger. The human finger uses similar vibrations to identify textures, but the robot finger is even more sensitive.<

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Reply Robots Get a Feel for the World: Touch More Sensitve Than a Human's (Original post)
2on2u Jun 2012 OP
HopeHoops Jun 2012 #1
Brickbat Jun 2012 #2
HopeHoops Jun 2012 #3
Brickbat Jun 2012 #4
surrealAmerican Jun 2012 #5

Response to 2on2u (Original post)

Tue Jun 19, 2012, 11:04 AM

1. It will be interesting to see what the sex industry does with this technology.

 


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Response to HopeHoops (Reply #1)

Tue Jun 19, 2012, 11:07 AM

2. I heard a story on NPR yesterday about a revolutionary, learning robot that spent hours flailing

and trying to pick up a bottle of juice. So I'm assuming sex robots will spend many years doing a lot of fumbling and missing what they're looking for. Best just to take care of it yourself.

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Response to Brickbat (Reply #2)

Tue Jun 19, 2012, 12:01 PM

3. Oh, I really can't respond to this. It would violate every SOP on DU all at once.

 

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Response to HopeHoops (Reply #3)

Tue Jun 19, 2012, 12:03 PM

4. I figured I'd walk it up to the line and see if anyone else wanted to cross it.

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Response to Brickbat (Reply #2)

Tue Jun 19, 2012, 12:24 PM

5. "Hours" is nothing.

It takes humans at least a few years of such fumbling to learn how not to spill. The key here is learning. A lot of initial fumbling is not much of an issue if, once the skill is learned, the knowledge is transferable.

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