Tell us a bit about Locus Robotics and how you got started.
Locus Robotics is an autonomous warehouse robotics company to support critical e-commerce fulfillment operations for retailers and 3PL providers.
Locus was incubated inside of Quiet Logistics, our e-commerce fulfillment company, which had been using Kiva Systems robotic technology until Amazon acquired the company in 2012. We were then informed that Amazon would consume all Kiva capacity for the foreseeable future and that we would no longer be able to use Kiva technology.
The technological transformation is generating an influx of innovative “breakthrough” products and services. This surge is shaking things up, forcing us to ask new questions and is sometimes frightening. This can be seen today with the arrival of “active” robotics – autonomous, often mobile devices that interact with humans and their environment – which is increasingly being deployed in a wide range of sectors, from medicine and logistics to maintenance, surveillance, exploration and others.
Christian Wolf is associate professor at INSA in Lyon and LIRIS since 2005. Since 2017, he is on leave with INRIA and CITI. He is interested in computer vision and machine learning, deep learning, especially in the visual analysis of complex scenes in motion and robotics: gesture and activity recognition and pose estimation.
I am Matthias Schmitt, the founder of Still Human, a robotics start-up and industrial design & engineering firm. For 3 years now, Still Human has been working with several start-ups and companies in the digital sector on various subjects such as robotics and IOT. Still Human’s uniqueness lies in its expertise as a roboticist and designer.
– What is the interest of design in robotics? Is it just a question of aesthetics or a means of improving the robot’s performance?
The advancements in robotics has given rise to the manufacturing of affordable educational mobile robots. Due to their size and cost, they possess limited global localization and mapping capability. The purpose of producing these robots is not fully materialized if advance algorithms cannot be demonstrated on them. In this paper, we address this limitation by just using dead-reckoning and low bandwidth noisy infrared sensors for localization in an unknown environment.
In the rapid progress and wide spreading of robotics, Europe is playing a leading role and is in a forefront position for its competitiveness at both industrial and scientific level. Together with the impressive technological advances in ICT and AI, robotics is today bringing an impact on economy and society by enabling the materialization of a new generation of machines intended to perform tasks at the service of human beings and in many aspects of our lives.
While the technological developments in Artificial Intelligence offer new opportunities for big data analysis; While the rampant implantation of sensors and connected objects multiplies the capacity of data capture in our professional and personal environments, public or private; Whereas robotics is both a sensorimotor system for collecting data that can feed the progress of Artificial Intelligence and the embodiment of artificial intelligence, which can put it into action in the physical world;
The stakes have become very high and public and private organizations are gearing up to capitalize on the opportunities raised by these new technologies, anticipate their impacts, and better regulate their use.
The digital transformation is now focused on Big Data, in strong convergence with Artificial Intelligence, IoT and new networks (5G,LoRa, Lifi,etc.). Service robotics enters new fields of application. Blockchain is disturbing the debate on Cybersecurity.