Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Clothing-controlled robot

Here are some of my students testing their Smart clothing-controlled robot. We gave them an iCATch tool kit, the system that we presented at CHI 2010 that garnered a Honorable Mention. The tool kit has enough components to build two things. A robot equipped with an iCATch controller, 2 motors, and a bunch of sensors. Then a piece of smart clothing equipped with another iCATch controller and another bunch of sensors. Using the sensors on the smart clothing, the wearer can send commands to a computer wirelessly through BlueTooth. The computer then relays the commands to the robot wirelessly, also through BlueTooth. The robot can then be remotely driven to navigate through a set of obstacles, detect the colors of designated targets, and report the results back to the computer and the user.

I am sure this set up is unique. Because we designed and manufactured the iCATch and the toolkit. I cannot claim too much credit, however. The iCATch system was mainly designed by my colleague G, and built by our excellent staff and students in the eToy Lab.

Here is another team testing their own version of the system. If the seated student looks familiar, it may be because he is running in the by-election for the Legislative Council on this coming Sunday.

This is how we integrate our research with teaching.


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