Author Topic: Need Some Alpha Testers for a Programmable Autonomous Robot  (Read 1582 times)

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Offline EliEhrmanTopic starter

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Hi,

I am looking for a very small number of alpha testers for a new programmable autonomous robot. The robot has an off-the-shelf capability that does not exist in any retail-level robot today. It will provide a really exciting new opportunity for robot enthusiasts.

I am not yet ready to make details public, so anybody who is interested in more information should do the following:

1. Write an email to me at [email protected]

2. Please specify your name, where you live and any corporation that you are affiliated with (i.e. work for).

3. Please write to me in your own words that you will not disclose any information that I send you.

If you find sending such information to a me (a person you don't know) objectionable - I understand. Once we launch, this information will be public anyway.

If you do write to me asking for information, you are obligated in no way. Hey, you're just asking!

I am looking for people who can program in any PC language - C, Java, VB, etc. - any language that can write Windows Sockets. We also have a simple VB framework for getting up and running quickly. It will help if you are familiar with basic software algorithms, search, path-finding etc.

This program will be open until I post on this thread that we have found the people we want. Please don't email me after that.

Hope to hear from you and good luck to all of you in all your robotic endeavors. There's no field in the universe as much fun as ours!

Thank you,

Eli Ehrman
Meimadtek Ltd.
Beit Shemesh, Israel
« Last Edit: May 17, 2011, 08:04:47 AM by EliEhrman »

Offline EliEhrmanTopic starter

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Re: Need Some Alpha Testers for a Programmable Autonomous Robot
« Reply #1 on: May 05, 2011, 11:41:12 PM »
Hello again,

People have written to me in response to my post, saying that I have supplied too little information.

So...

The product that I am talking about is a robot that solves, out-of-the box, the problem of determining absolute location and direction.

Eli

Offline EliEhrmanTopic starter

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Re: Need Some Alpha Testers for a Programmable Autonomous Robot
« Reply #2 on: May 08, 2011, 03:42:27 AM »
Below is a short list of SoR threads that I found that discuss ways of calculating robot location. There are actually many more - it is obviously an important capability and much discussed - but this gives a smaple.

I think that none of the methods discussed in the following threads works well enough.

Eli

stereo Vision, disparity maps:

http://www.societyofrobots.com/robotforum/index.php?topic=7067.0

http://www.societyofrobots.com/robotforum/index.php?topic=1677.0
 
http://www.societyofrobots.com/robotforum/index.php?topic=1679.0

http://www.societyofrobots.com/programming_computer_vision_tutorial_pt4.shtml

IR Triangulation:

http://www.societyofrobots.com/robotforum/index.php?topic=3224.0

odometer/encoder:

http://www.societyofrobots.com/robotforum/index.php?topic=6422.0

various:

http://www.societyofrobots.com/robotforum/index.php?topic=6038.0

voice:

http://www.societyofrobots.com/robotforum/index.php?topic=1416.0

IR + encoders:

http://www.societyofrobots.com/robotforum/index.php?topic=6422.0

Offline Soeren

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Re: Need Some Alpha Testers for a Programmable Autonomous Robot
« Reply #3 on: May 08, 2011, 07:10:53 AM »
Hi,

Below is a short list of SoR threads that I found that discuss ways of calculating robot location. There are actually many more - it is obviously an important capability and much discussed - but this gives a smaple.

I think that none of the methods discussed in the following threads works well enough.
So, now we know what you don't like or find defunct - not that I see the point in telling us, unless you wanna show a better way.

So, show us how you'd do it - being constructive really beats being destructive.
Regards,
Søren

A rather fast and fairly heavy robot with quite large wheels needs what? A lot of power?
Please remember...
Engineering is based on numbers - not adjectives

Offline EliEhrmanTopic starter

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Re: Need Some Alpha Testers for a Programmable Autonomous Robot
« Reply #4 on: May 08, 2011, 09:33:07 AM »
OK Soeren, you got me there. I admit that it was a bit of a cheap shot.

What's worse, as you can see from the post that started this thread, I am not yet ready to post, on a public forum, the method that I think does work.

However, perhaps I can take the sting out of your criticism by claiming that if I were to give a clear explanation of why something doesn't work - then that, is constructive, after all. So here goes:

First of all, what do I mean by "doesn't work well enough"?

When something really works, it works all the time.

What's even more important is that when something really works, I can give it to you and it'll work in your living room.

If I build a robot that does something advanced in my workshop, that's really cool. But if I need to be present every time it's demonstrated and it needs super-careful setup and just the right conditions - then we're not there yet. I am not belittling the amazing stuff all the brilliant minds in our super-cool field are doing. I'm just trying to look at the horizon a bit.

Take computer vision. I know that there's great software out there that you can use to track objects. However, will it always track your robot? Will it track your robot work when it's on my carpet? Even if it does, can you use it to translate the image of a pan-and-tilt camera into a robot's x-y location and direction on the floor?

I suggest that only once absolute location-direction of multiple robots in real-time is solved, can you really start doing useful and fun stuff with robots and not just cool stuff.

Take stereo-vision. The theory is well worked out - but matching the pixels between two images is really tough. It is not always reliable except under carefully controlled conditions. I even accept that there are some really promising algorithms out there in academia but the processing time is way too long even for the latest and greatest PC.

Odometers, as mentioned in the threads I gave links to (you're in some of them, I know), have ever increasing errors. That makes it really difficult to get a continuous x-y location.

GPS, is, well, GPS. We all use it and we all know its limitations.

I could go into detail on the technology of iRobot's Rovio, but this post is long enough already.

I claim that when we can get mobile robots that know absolute position and if we can package such a product so that it works off the shelf and out-of-the-box then we'll make a breakthrough in robotics on the level of the revolution of the Personal Computer.

Well, I hope that I've absolved myself,

Eli

Offline rbtying

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Re: Need Some Alpha Testers for a Programmable Autonomous Robot
« Reply #5 on: May 08, 2011, 12:03:40 PM »
So... do you have a product or not? You're using an awful lot of ifs.  I think what Soeren was trying to get at was that most people who have done more than cursory research into robotics have realized the same problems that you have listed - it's just that solving them isn't terribly cost-effective.  We're interested in what you're doing differently - otherwise, kindly label your post a 'rant' so that people can tell you don't have a proposal.

(specs would be really nice xD)

(apologies if this sounded offensive, if so, it wasn't intended)

Offline KurtEck

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Re: Need Some Alpha Testers for a Programmable Autonomous Robot
« Reply #6 on: May 08, 2011, 01:42:31 PM »
Doing a quick look on the company name: Meimadtek Ltd.

Shows several hits, including a website that says they are building a hobby robot and several hits on a patent that they submitted last year:   http://www.faqs.org/patents/app/20100178982

Kurt

Offline EliEhrmanTopic starter

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Re: Need Some Alpha Testers for a Programmable Autonomous Robot
« Reply #7 on: May 08, 2011, 11:50:02 PM »
Well there you have it then. Looks like you know about patent searches.

If anyone wants more information, you'll have to write to me as per the first post of the thread. Otherwise, just sit tight - I'll make details public when I launch.

So... do you have a product or not?

Yeah, sure I got a product. That's why I'm asking for alpha testers. If anybody wants to actually get the product in their hands, write to me and we can talk about that too.

Eli


Offline EliEhrmanTopic starter

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Re: Need Some Alpha Testers for a Programmable Autonomous Robot
« Reply #8 on: May 17, 2011, 08:00:53 AM »
Hi all,

I am closing this phase of the alpha test. If anybody reads this message as it slowly slips into the archives, please just google "Meimadtek" or "Eli Ehrman" - I hope that it will provide you a link to the latest iteration of my product.

Finally, I'd like to thank Admin and all the members of this forum for (a) making this forum happen and (b) for allowing (or putting up with) me to use this forum to post this request. I did not post it anywhere else on the Internet because I knew that I did not need to. I have often been one of the silent guests on SoR and I hope I will be more active on this forum - but like all good intentions...

Eli

 


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