Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Boston Dynamics’ Spot robot dog learns to replan routes on its own

The American engineering and robotics design company Boston Dynamics has released update 3.0 for the Spot robot dog, which adds independence to it and helps it adapt to the world even better. The “Spot Release 3.0” helps Spot do its jobs without the need for human intervention.

The new update adds flexible autonomy and repeatable data capture, making Spot the data collection solution you need to make inspection rounds safer and more efficient. Spot’s automated inspections have now been streamlined for effective data capture and processing. Multiple tasks can be scheduled for Spot, such as collecting photos, thermal images, point clouds, and other critical data; processing that data into valuable signals at the edge with computer vision models; and creating custom uploads to send those signals to existing systems, which makes it easy to keep all data in one place for analysis and review.

The Spot Release 3.0 also improves Spot’s Autowalk system with better planning capabilities. The robot has learned to determine the best path to perform target actions on its own and can dynamically change the routes if new obstacles arise in its way. This will come in handy in busy, remote, or dangerous work locations.

The upgraded Spot robot is smart enough to automatically plan routes when you choose the actions you want to perform. The robot uses scene recognition to capture the same image from the same angle every time with scene-based camera alignment. Human inspectors can conduct the live review of changes Spot notices with computer vision, such as gauge reading and thermal analysis.

As of the update, the robots started to make more analytical data available to the computer software. Now, it also allows you to automatically push data into the existing systems at the end of a mission with custom code and has integration with cloud servers such as AWS, Azure, and IBM Maximo.

Other new features include remotely restart payloads, easily configuring payload parameters, the Spot Arm improvements such as added functionality for push-bar doors, revamped grasping UX, and updated SDK.

Of course, these updates will only be really utilitarian for those who wish to spend more than US$74,500 on this Boston Dynamics’ signature canine. In early August, Xiaomi presented CyberDog, an open-source quadruped robot that is almost 50 times cheaper than the four-legged competitor from Boston Dynamics.