Misty wants to be your personal robot assistant
Misty wants to be your personal robot assistant
4:07

Misty wants to be your personal robot assistant

Science
[MUSIC] When you think of personal robots the first thing that comes to mind might be something like this from science fiction, or it might look more like this. This is Misty II and it's from a company called Misty Robotics, who wanna put one of these robots in every home and office. It can be anything from a security robot to a friendly companion to keep an eye on your elderly relatives. When voice assistants like the Amazon Echo first hit the market, no one was really sure what we'd use them for beyond setting alarms. Or playing music. Fast-forward to today and we're ordering groceries or even controlling appliances with our voice. Hey, Siri, close the shades. But Misty wants to be more than just a voice assistant. Her creators see her more like Rosie from the Jetsons who was a real part of the family. [MUSIC] We go to see Misty [UNKNOWN] and get a sneak peak into the future of home robots. Misty has a range of sensors to detect obstacles. And it can map rooms in 2D and 3D with depth sensors. You can say hey, Misty, can you go to the living room? And she knows how to get there. There's also a high resolution camera which we use for computer vision, so for things like face recognition. You go up to Misty, she knows who you are. I'm gonna take you through a demo that Misty calls receptionist. I am gonna register my face on Misty, and then she is gonna take me to the person that I'm visiting, in this case, Ian. So here we go. Hi Misty. Are you here to see someone? I will show you to them. [UNKNOWN] is here. Thank you Misty. Programmable robots aren't exactly new and there's growing competition in the home robot space. Amazon's rumored to be making a home robot powered by Alexa, while the likes of Buddy, Pepper, and Kuri continue to do many of the things Misty does. Misty Robotics is a spinoff from Sphero the company that bought BB8 and R2D2 to life, so there's no surprise that misty is pretty cute and personality is one of the ways that Misty is hoping to set itself apart. It's actually one of the hardest parts of the robot because it's not, especially when we have a bunch of engineers sitting around. Creating a personality isn't maybe what comes naturally to us. Like, we went through probably 200 different iterations of different types of eyes to find just the right one, so you can kind of look at Misty and understand how she's feeling. Eventually Misty will be able to respond to different inputs, like your facial expression or the tone of your voice, and adapt based on these cues. It's going to a pet adoption center where it goes with the ones that are super outgoing and come up and jump around, and there are the puppies that are in the back and are more shy. You really find the one that connects with you. Eventually we think robots are gonna have those sort of personalities as you're interacting. They're changing. [MUSIC] At the moment, part of that personality is showing through Misty's expressions and sounds. [SOUND] Even if you've never seen a line of code before, it's easy to program the robot. Using Blockly, I got Misty to roll forward, deliver a cup of coffee, and make a sound. [SOUND] Misty is modular, so you can attach a trailer or swap out components like the arms for cup holders. The arduino backpack powers lots of different projects, like this touch screen. So you can feasibly 3D print almost anything from Misty and it would work once you had it basically plugged in. Yep. Absolutely. What's the craziest thing that you've seen so far? I love the LED mohawk. That's probably the craziest one. Future versions will add to this modular concept, and Misty 3 might even be able to pick things up and move them around. For now, Misty is really targeted to developers and students, whether or not people find it Many useful home robots in general, remains to be seen, especially if they en dup costing hundreds or even thousands of dollars. Misty 2 is set to release in December 2018.

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