NAO Robots Used In Treatment Of People With Special Needs (Video)

Watch Robots Play Part in Treatment for People With Special Needs on PBS. See more from PBS NewsHour.


"Notre Dame psychology professors use a robot built in France by Aldebaran Robotics as a tool to encourage children with autism, who may struggle just to engage in simple conversation. According to the Autism Society, 1 percent of American children ages three to 17 have an autism spectrum disorder."

Related link: PBS NewsHour

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ROBO-ONE Light 6 and ROBO-ONE 22 Competition Schedules Announced


The ROBO-ONE organizing committee announced that the 6th ROBO-ONE Light competition will be held Saturday, February 23, 2013 at the Miraikan National Museum of Emerging Science in Tokyo.

The qualifying tests for the 22nd ROBO-ONE competition will be held the same day immediately following the ROBO-ONE Light event, with the full competition scheduled for Sunday, February 24th, 2013 at the same venue.

The events, which will be staged in the large 7th floor auditorium, are open to the public with free admission.

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NAO Humanoid Robot Movement Detection (Video)

NAO Robot Motion Detection

Aldebaran Robotics released a new video for the NAO humanoid robot. Of course, you would expect that a robot this expensive would be able to identify movement around it. So, of the video is in anything spectacular. It's just a simple tutorial.

But, what I found interesting was the copy of robot magazine laying on the desk in the video. It's a little bit hard to tell from the angle, but it appears to be the recent issue featuring  the NAO Developer Days event held in Paris earlier this year. Of course, I have a personal attachment to that particular issue.... :)

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Dr. Guero’s Amazing Tightrope Walking Robot (Video)

Tightrope Walking Robot

Remember Dr. Guero, the robot builder that stunned everyone last year with his bicycle riding Primer-V2 humanoid robot? He's back with another astonishing robot feat. This time his Primer-V4 robot is a full fledged tightrope walker!

Pretty darn amazing, especially considering that just a few short years ago many of the hobby level humanoid robot builders were lucky to keep their robots balanced and upright while walking for an extended period or boxing in the ROBO-ONE ring.

The tightrope used for this feat was a 4mm diameter cable suspended 1 meter above the floor. The technical challenges were significant and considerably different from normal humanoid robot walking. When a bipedal robot walks on the ground the standard approach is to apply gyro sensor feedback corrections primarily to the leg servos to shift the center of gravity. The arms don't play a significant role.

With tightrope walking the arms and upper body play a much more critical role in shifting the robots center of gravity to keep it balanced and avoid crashing to the floor. Dr. Guero's blog doesn't mention the use of any safety net, but I'm sure he had to catch the robot quite a few times before he got it working perfectly.

The robot's feet have a small slot for the tightrope, which is fair enough.  A human tightrope walker in the circus would cup their feet and use their toes in the same fashion.

tightrope robot

Here's Dr. Guero's bicycling robot, for those that haven't already enjoyed it:

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Nao Control Server App Released for iPhone and iPad

nao robot ios app

If you're lucky enough to have an Aldebaran NAO humanoid robot, then you'll want to zip right over to the Apple iTunes App Store and grab the new NAO Control Server iOS app by Tommy Kammerer.

The Nao Control Server app supports starting and stopping behaviors installed on the robot, use of a joystick to control Nao, triggering speech, and other functions. To take advantage of the full functionality you have to pre-install a related Nao app from the Nao Store. But, even without the Nao Store app, you can command the robot to pronounce text and also trigger behaviors.

According to the iTunes app page, the program is compatible with iPhone, iPod Touch, and iPads running iOS 4.2 or later.

Via: App Store - Nao Control Server

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Getting Started with ROS for the NAO Humanoid Robot Tutorial

nao robot ros has a new tutorial posted to help beginners get the NAO humanoid robot up and running with the ROS system including NAOqi and the simulated model in rviz.

All of the software runs on Linux PC (Ubuntu is used in the tutorial) and doesn't require an actual NAO to be connected for the simulation. That being said, the NAOqi SDK needs to be installed, which typically requires being a registered NAO user so that you can download the SDK from the Aldebaran website. The tutorial also mentions that a precompiled NAOqi binary is included with the Webots 6.4.4 simulation software and will be covered in a different tutorial.

Via: nao/Tutorials/Getting-Started - ROS Wiki

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Two Meter Tall Humanoid Robot Plays Master/Slave (Video)

4 meter robot

I first met Hajime Sakamoto in 2005 during a ROBO-ONE competition in Tokyo. One of the most striking and impressive things about Sakamoto was his total dedication to humanoid robotics

Many of the other ROBO-ONE competitors design excellent, world-class robots but they do it primarily as a hobby. It's a way for them to express their creativity, skill, and passion away from the day to day work grind. It's a pleasant and fulfilling escape from their daily duties. But for Sakamoto, designing and building high performance humanoid robots is a way of life.


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