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These Robots Can Move Your Couch


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University of Cincinnati graduate students Andrew Barth (left) and Yufeng Sun with the furniture-moving robots.

Said University of Cincinnati graduate student Andrew Barth, If you can train robots to work semi-independently with as little information as possible, then you made your system more robust to that failure and made it easier for large groups to collaborate."

Credit: University of Cincinnati

University of Cincinnati (UC) engineers taught two robots to move a couch together without either robot directing the other.

The robots employ genetic fuzzy logic, which emulates human reasoning by substituting degrees of rightness or wrongness for simple binary classification (yes-no), while genetic algorithms learn from past results and optimize performance.

In simulations of hauling a virtual couch around two obstacles and through a narrow door, the machines successfully completed the task 95% of the time; they also completed the task when encountering two unfamiliar obstacles and a door in a different location 93% of the time.

UC's Andrew Barth said, "If you can train robots to work semi-independently with as little information as possible, then you made your system more robust to that failure and made it easier for large groups to collaborate."

From UC News
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