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The Advanced Control Lab at National Taiwan University has created a household entertainment robot called JULIA that sings and dances.  Originally developed in 2007, the team has been working on it as recently as December of 2009.  JULIA responds to voice commands and can be interacted with through its touchscreen, which can display anything from your home media server.  For example you could tell it to move forward, backward, turn, or launch applications like a music player or a web browser.  Rather than rigidly complying with every command instantly, the robot interacts in a more natural fashion through questions and answers which gives it some personality.

As part of the system, your house would be upgraded with sensors to become a smart home environment capable of communicating with the robot.  JULIA would use this sensor network to provide general information when people are at home, and perform guard duty when they’re away.  For safety reasons JULIA is equipped with several ultrasonic sensors and a laser range finder for obstacle detection, self-localization, and mapping.  NTU’s real-time obstacle avoidance algorithm allows the robot to move through an environment without abrupt halts in movement (see also the guide robot Hsiao Mei and nurse robot Monica).


[source: NTU Advanced Control Lab] & []


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