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CES: This robot doesn’t suck

January 8, 2007

iRobot roomba programmable

But it’ll do whatever else you want it to, according to its maker, iRobot.

Announced at CES this week, iRobot has created “Create,” a $130 robot in the case of its popular Roomba robo-vacuum that can be programmed by students and robo-engineeers without having to build a robot from scratch.

Coming soon: Professional Roomba FROGGER!

From the iRobot release:

“Innovators dream of creating useful robots, but they often get bogged down with designing a mobile platform that works,” said Helen Greiner, co-founder and chairman of iRobot. “iRobot Create fills a need in the robot industry for a standard, durable hardware platform on which to rapidly develop new, innovative mobile robots.” Create is based on the core technology of iRobot Roomba®, the vacuuming robot that is cleaning millions of homes worldwide, and is compatible with Roomba’s rechargeable batteries, remote control and other accessories.

With Create, developers can now begin designing new robot applications out of the box. This new platform provides access to robot sensors and actuators via an open interface. Create also features standard connections for electronics and threaded mounting holes that allow users to secure their inventions to the robot, streamlining the integration of third-party electronics such as sensors, cameras, arms and wireless connections.

A variety of methods and programming languages can be used to control Create. Beginners can observe the robot’s behavior in one of ten demonstration modes, or they can program the robot directly by downloading short scripts with any basic terminal program.

Still, I think this YouTube clip of a monkey head on a Roomba is my favorite use of the vacuum (and a favorite way to scare your cat!):

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One Comment
  1. January 15, 2007 4:43 pm

    What’s the differece between a robot and a politician? Answer: the robot doesn’t have lie to make an impression.

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