Ever since one of our team members started tinkering with remotely driven robots via online chat (see Skypebot), we’ve been seeing “telepresence” robots everywhere. The NY Times has a great story on telepresence robotics this weekend (The Boss is Robotic, and Rolling Up Behind You) . From the article:
For years, the military and law enforcement agencies have used specialized robots to disarm bombs and carry out other dangerous missions. This summer, such systems helped seal a BP well a mile below the surface of the Gulf of Mexico. Now, with rapidly falling costs, the next frontiers are the office, the hospital and the home. Mobile robots are now being used in hundreds of hospitals nationwide as the eyes, ears and voices of doctors who cannot be there in person. They are being rolled out in workplaces, allowing employees in disparate locales to communicate more easily and letting managers supervise employees from afar. And they are being tested as caregivers in assisted-living centers.
Read the full story at http://www.nytimes.com/2010/09/05/science/05robots.html?_r=1&pagewanted=all
TDT enjoyed some much deserved downtime today, at our annual Independence Day Weekend potluck. Sean Denny, of the IEEE Florida West Coast Section, joined us, as did two of our graduate members. The rainy day forecast held off until after everyone got in some pool time, and then indoor card games provided entertainment for the rest of the afternoon.
One of our team members, Chris, checked in from Chicago, enroute to his summer internship at Anybots , a telepresence robotics company. We mentioned QB back in May, noting that TDT programmer Chris Willingham had been developing a similar robot – his Skypebot – that provided telepresence capability via Skype. In the course of researching mobility methods, Chris ended up speaking with Trevor Blackwell , whom he was delighted to learn is the inventor of Anybot’s QB. As a result of their conversations, Chris was offered an internship at Anybots in Mountain View, CA, which he happily and gratefully accepted.
So it ended up being a great day to celebrate all sorts of independence, as we watch our team members head out into exciting futures, doing the things they love!