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Programming by Demonstration: Flipping Pancakes

You may remember the name Sylvain Calinon for his work on Fujitsu’s HOAP-3 humanoid robot.  Back when he was earning his PhD at the EPFL in Switzerland, he helped program the little bot to draw portraits and reproduce the motions of preparing an omelet. Now Dr. Calinon and Dr. Peter Kormushev at the Italian Institute of Technology in Genova Italy, are pursuing the problem of programming through demonstration called kinesthetic teaching with a robot arm.  The following video shows the process of teaching it how to flip a pancake in a pan.  After 50 trials and refinements along the way, the robot was able to successfully complete the task.  Of course, I’d like to see them do more work with the HOAP-3 but this is still pretty cool, and hopefully their work can be applied to full-body humanoids at some point in the future.

Video (Mirror):

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Thanks, Sylvain!

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