It is no secret that robots are now becoming more and more sophisticated. One thing that is paramount in robotics research these days is making robot understand simple day to day instructions, ones that do not require complex bits of code or segmented command sequences. Researchers in Germany are aiming to do just that, a robot named RP2 is learning to make pancakes and cheese omelettes by reading recipes on websites such as WikiHow. It is part of a European project named roboHow which started in 2012.The video below shows an overview of what they have achieved
Teaching robots how to read and act on simple instructions given in human terms is essentially a difficult task. It is easier for humans to act on a set of given instructions because we already have a set of basic knowledge about a specific task, a human does not need to be told how grip a frying pan or how to twist one’s fingers to open a jar.
In one set of experiments, the researchers are teaching PR2 robots to perform simple lab tasks, such as handling chemicals. Once a robot has learned a set of instruction those commands are incorporated into an open source database know as OpenEase.
Sounds pretty promising for the future of robotics. Isn’t it?