Humanoid robot and personal assistant
Personal and mobility assistant are intended to make manual tasks daily, first for the elderly and disabled, then for all
Romeo is a project of robot with a human size and shape, from several national French organizations that will be built by Aldebaran Robotics.
To accomplish the Romeo project, 10 million euros have been invested by these agencies with partners, a list that includes INRIA and Aldebaran, Cap Digital, DGCIS, Ville de Paris.
The aim of this initiative is the same as that put forward by Japanese manufacturers: make a helper who can help the elderly and disabled in daily life. As their proportion tends to increase with time, it will become increasingly expensive to put staff at their disposal.
The robot should be able to bring items and help people moving. It can understand what is expected of it, discern emotions on a human face. It will respond to voice and can talk to clarify its duties. His appearance must be human, and obviously be closer to that of Nao than Terminator.
It could make use of the work on Meka HCRL made for the same purpose.
The projections provide a first model of less than five feet that would be available in 2010. In 2011 a second model will be tested with patients of the Vision Institute, suffering from a loss of autonomy.
Aldebaran will build on this work to achieve a commercial model that would be available in 2015. The model unveiled December 15, 2010 is measuring 1.40 m. and weighs 40 kilos (see image right). It has 37 degrees of freedom, and humanoid hands capable to manipulate objects.But its price will be around 250 000 euros.
Meka HCRL is a experimental robot which was designed by the Human Centered Robotics Group to show human emotions.
We do not have much information on this project, only a video and technical specifications, but we can note that its looks rather engageant, better suited to this function of personal assistant of every day than Romeo which feels more like a porter of packets in a warehouse.