ActivMedia Robotics

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An ActivMedia Pioneer 3-AT robot at the Georgia Institute of Technology
Seekur.jpg
A Pioneer 3-AT robot in the Gazebo 3D robot simulator with a SICK laser rangefinder mounted on top

ActivMedia Robotics, later known as MobileRobots Inc, then sold to Adept and renamed "Adept Mobilerobots" is a company in Amherst, New Hampshire that designs and manufactures autonomous robots, commercial service robots, robot software and navigation systems for robot developers and manufacturers.[1]

History[edit]

ActivMedia was founded in 1995 by computer scientist Bill Kennedy and Jeanne Dietsch, who became the company's CEO. It was an early developer of autonomous robots. These were widely used in universities and often used by students involved in learning to be roboticists. An early commercially available model was the AmigoBot,[2] which could be programmed with a language called Saphira.[3]

An ActivMedia robot was chosen by Microsoft as the reference platform on which to implement their new Robotics SDK and is supported by ROS and Player Stage Robot APIs. The 2003-2004 Centibots project, sponsored by DARPA and investigated by SRI International, utilized 100 ActivMedia robots to perform distributed tasks.[4]

In 2007, the company released an omnidirectional Seekur security rover. The omnidirectional wheels let it drive sideways as well as forwards and back, to perform in tight spaces. In early 2008, Seekur demonstrated autonomous navigation in GPS-blocked spaces around buildings. In 2009, the company expanded the capabilities of its Motivity robot autonomy to enable fleets to behave more like people, following site-specific traffic rules and varying its speech and other aspects of its "personality" in ways appropriate to its workplace.

The company developed ARIA, a software library of robotics control algorithms.[5]

On June 14, 2010 MobileRobots Inc. was acquired from founders Jeanne Dietsch and William Kennedy by Adept Technology.[6] Since then the company has been testing mobile conveyor robots and telepresence systems for use in corporate and hospital settings.[7][8]

Products[edit]

The company developed security robots, but with more powerful computers and new autonomous techniques such as simultaneous localization and mapping, Monte Carlo localization, Markov decision process, and modified value-iterated search path planning to create a new generation of autonomous robots for delivery and security purposes in hospitals, offices, labs and other buildings.[9]

It also created flexible intelligent AGV applications, designing the Motivity control system used by RMT Robotics to develop its ADAM iAGV (Self-Guided Vehicle), used for complex pick and place operations, in conjunction with gantry systems and industrial robot arms, used in first-tier auto supply factories to move products from process to process in non-linear layouts. Smaller versions also work in semi-conductor plant clean rooms, carrying product from workstation to workstation.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Robots Move into Corporate Roles". IDG Enterprise (10 October 2005). Computerworld. IDG Enterprise. pp. 26–. ISSN 0010-4841. 
  2. ^ "Review: ActivMedia AmigoBot E-Presence". CNET, By: Colin Duwe Reviewed: January 24, 2001
  3. ^ Gareth Branwyn (19 September 2003). Absolute Beginner's Guide to Building Robots. Que Publishing. pp. 69–. ISBN 978-0-7897-4548-4. 
  4. ^ "Watch out, the Centibots are invading LinuxWorld". Linux for Devices. July 30, 2003. Retrieved July 29, 2012. 
  5. ^ Héctor . M Becerra; Carlos Sagues (26 March 2014). Visual Control of Wheeled Mobile Robots: Unifying Vision and Control in Generic Approaches. Springer. pp. 42–. ISBN 978-3-319-05783-5. 
  6. ^ "Adept Technology Announces Acquisition Of Leading Autonomous Mobile Robot Provider". Archived from the original on June 30, 2012. Retrieved July 9, 2008. 
  7. ^ "Adept Technology, Inc. - Adept Technology Unveils Expanded Automation Solutions for Producers at Pack Expo 2010". Ir.adept.com. Archived from the original on February 21, 2014. Retrieved February 18, 2014. 
  8. ^ "The Boss Is Robotic, and Rolling Up Behind You" New York Times, Science section, September 4, 2010
  9. ^ "Company Leads the Way in Robot Innovation". Fox News Channel. December 12, 2007. [dead link][dead link]

External links[edit]