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Input Devices Displays GUI Microsoft Robotics Technology Hardware

Robot Swarm Control On Microsoft's Surface 106

zerOnIne writes "Dr. Mark Micire of UMass Lowell has built an intriguing new user interface on the Microsoft Surface, a multitouch-capable table computer. The interface is being used to control swarms of robots for disaster response, search, and rescue. One of the most interesting things about it is the intuitive tabletop joystick widget. Using a very fast hand-detection-and-identification algorithm, they can paint a touch joystick (dubbed the DREAM controller) directly underneath the hand. This joystick conforms to the size of the user's hand and tracks with hand movements, making sure that the control is always directly under the hand where the user expects it, even without haptic feedback. I've had a chance to go hands-on with this system, and I think it's truly remarkable."
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Robot Swarm Control On Microsoft's Surface

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  • by gmuslera ( 3436 ) on Thursday August 26, 2010 @11:17PM (#33388974) Homepage Journal
    Using a Microsoft product to control a swarm of (potentially killer?) robots?
  • by LifesABeach ( 234436 ) on Friday August 27, 2010 @12:11AM (#33389194) Homepage
    I don't know weather to laugh or scream.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday August 27, 2010 @12:50AM (#33389318)

    This rant needs more cowbell.

  • EULA? (Score:4, Funny)

    by Mr. Freeman ( 933986 ) on Friday August 27, 2010 @12:53AM (#33389330)
    Microsoft surface being used for search and rescue. Doesn't the EULA specifically state "not to be used for life saving operations or operations in which failure of the system could result in bodily injury"? A search and rescue robot certainly qualifies as a life saving device, the failure of which could result in people being dropped or crushed.

    I wonder why the researchers that made this felt that disregarding the EULA was acceptable.
  • by Ihmhi ( 1206036 ) <> on Friday August 27, 2010 @01:33AM (#33389432)

    This rant needs more cowbell.

    Can do!

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  • by Hognoxious ( 631665 ) on Friday August 27, 2010 @03:00AM (#33389682) Homepage Journal

    Not as frightening if you are sitting at the controls

    It might be a mistake in their programming. It might be due to a cunning ruse by the hero. But in the final scene, they always turn on their master. Them's the rules, see.

  • by Hognoxious ( 631665 ) on Friday August 27, 2010 @03:06AM (#33389706) Homepage Journal

    1) User swats away a fly
    2) A thousand robots charge off the edge of a cliff
    3) ???
    4) *Sigh* Back to the drawing board

The intelligence of any discussion diminishes with the square of the number of participants. -- Adam Walinsky