Hitachi's "Intelligent Carry" isn't humanoid, doesn't build moon bases, and has, as far as we know, limited cooking skills. Rather, it's something so many robots are not: surprisingly practical. The boxy 'bot autonomously moves around a space without human help, carrying and delivering whatever to wherever.
To get around a space, Intelligent Carry relies upon an algorithm called SLAM (Simultaneous Localization and Mapping) and a precision laser sensor to measure up its environment, detect boundaries, and ensure it doesn't run into anything. It can them move about, moving objects for place to place in a factory or office.
It's somewhat limited in range – Hitachi says it works best within a 100 foot radius – so it won't yet navigate an entire warehouse. But what it lacks in distance it makes up for in strength, as larger versions can haul up to 2,200 pounds. It also hums along at a decent tick, maxing out at around 4.5 miles per hour.
The smaller versions of Intelligent Carry don't haul as much cargo, but man, are they ever cute.
So ... what is it supposed to do? If it's only reliable within a hundred-foot radius, only works on flat surfaces, is too bulky for a cluttered office environment ... what is it supposed to *do*?
Really not impressive at all after seeing Porsche's factory.
The 100ft range is kind of a deal breaker. It would be nifty if you could call one to you. Such as if you have a box you can call a bot to come to you, give it the box, and send it on its merry way to whom ever the box was for. Would be nice for warehouses brings stuff to or from dock or things to or from mail rooms.
Why does everyone expect products to 100% pure awesome at their first unveiling? I see this product demo as a kind of "hey, good things are on their way" kind of message.
Mapping the human algoritm is the future of robotics.
Humans don't have algorithims, and I'll tell you why.
. . . oh wait [system crash]