Audi autonomous car tech boss chats with humanoid robot as though it were entirely natural

Audi has demonstrated its autonomous car – which it calls “Jack” – in a road test featuring a humanoid robot called Sophia, developed by Hanson Robotics.

Audi’s head of concept development, automated driving, Klaus Verweyen, was sitting in the driver’s seat of the car, while Sophia was in the passenger seat.

Verweyen chatted away to Sophia as though it was the most normal thing in the world. Meanwhile, Jack drove itself from Audi’s facility onto a main highway and back again.  Continue reading Audi autonomous car tech boss chats with humanoid robot as though it were entirely natural

Microscan demonstrates industrial robot using MicroHawk smart cameras

microscan

Microscan, a provider of barcode, machine vision, verification, and lighting technology, has demonstrated flexible in-line inspection using the Universal Robots collaborative UR5 robotic arm and Microscan’s latest machine vision smart camera platform.

The robotic demo, at Automate 2017, featured what the company claims is “the world’s smallest Ethernet smart camera”, was given in partnership with Olympus Controls, an engineering services company specializing in machine automation.

The lightweight, flexible, and collaborative industrial robot – UR5 – automates repetitive and dangerous tasks with payloads of up to 5 kg.  Continue reading Microscan demonstrates industrial robot using MicroHawk smart cameras

Bright Box launches self-driving car platform trained with extreme driving in computer games

Bright Box, a specialist provider of connected car solutions, says its new self-driving car system has been trained using a neural network, deep learning and extreme racing computer games, in particular GTA 5. 

Bright Box, a European company, says its software is the basis for connected-vehicle applications used by the Nissan Smart Car app in Middle East, and KIA Remoto app.

Bright Box says its autonomous car solution also uses data from real-life examples.  Continue reading Bright Box launches self-driving car platform trained with extreme driving in computer games

North American industry buys record numbers of robots

industrial robots

The North American automation industry has set new records to begin 2016, according to the Association for Advancing Automation (A3), the industry’s trade group.

The advent of more automation in North American manufacturing promises increased efficiencies in production and the ability to compete globally, says A3.

A total of 14,583 robots valued at approximately $817 million were ordered from North American companies during the first half of 2016.  Continue reading North American industry buys record numbers of robots

This sensor enables cameras to see in cinematic vision even in total darkness, says its maker

InVisage Spark4K sample structured light image
InVisage Spark4K sample structured light image

InVisage says its Spark4K near-infrared sensor brings cinematic resolution, high dynamic range, and low power Consumption to cameras and other devices 

InVisage claims its Spark4K is the world’s highest resolution IR sensor with 35 per cent quantum efficiency at 940 nm, dynamic pixel sizing, global shutter, and up to “50 times less system power consumption” – less than what the company left us in the dark about.   

InVisage Technologies, the pioneering developer of QuantumFilm camera sensors, launched the Spark4K near-infrared (NIR) camera sensor.

A 1.1-micron pixel, 13-megapixel sensor in a 1/3-inch module, Spark4K features the world’s highest NIR resolution packing 4K video at 30 frames per second, making it ideal for augmented reality, autonomous, and authentication systems that require high-resolution, high dynamic range NIR imaging with global shutter capability.  Continue reading This sensor enables cameras to see in cinematic vision even in total darkness, says its maker

Robot vision: Mine eyes have seen the glory of three dimensions

Euro NCAP has been conducting tests to see how well autonomous cars can see pedestrians
Euro NCAP has been conducting tests to see how well autonomous cars can see pedestrians

Exclusive interview with Claude Florin, CEO of Fastree3D, on helping robots finally see the light just that little bit better than they did before

How do robots see the world? Until now, most of them have had to make do with conventional digital cameras for eyes. In technological terms, these cameras are much like those available to consumers in the shops and, increasingly these days, in their smartphones. As clever as they are, and as high quality as the images turn out to be, these cameras only capture the image as a two-dimensional arrangement of pixels.

This means that a robot using such cameras would not able to perceive the three-dimensional space its “eyes” are looking at. This problem of perception – of perceiving 3D space as 2D space – is solved, or at least tackled, at the coding stage.

To program the robot to translate the flat image into a three-dimensional space, and infer such things as depth, distance and geospatial location, is really quite difficult if approached from a purely computer programming – as in, coding – standpoint.  Continue reading Robot vision: Mine eyes have seen the glory of three dimensions