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Xavier has demonstrated itself as valuable research tool. Using Xavier as a prototype, Real-World Interfaces, Inc developed a complete robot on a B21 base for us.

Amelia Amelia has substantial engineering improvements over Xavier. It has a top speed of 32 inches per second, while improved integral dead-reckoning insures extremely accurate drive and position controls.

The battery life is six hours, and are hot-swappable, so Amelia does not have to be powered down to change them. 2 Pentium-100s are the main CPU's on board with special shock-mounted hard drives. A 75Mhz 486 laptop acts as onboard console. All these are inter-connected by an internal 10M Ethernet, and to the world via a 2MBs Wavelan wireless system. Sonar and infrared sensor arrays ring the robot, mounted on Smart Panels for quick and easy access to internal components. These Smart Panels also contain bump sensors. A Sony color camera is mounted on a Directed Perception pan/tilt head for visual sensing. Finally, an arm can extend for 4-degree of freedom manipulation of Amelia's world.

Holding a can Arm Waiting

Like Xavier, Amelia has a distributed, concurrent software system, which runs under NetBSD 1.0 and Linux 1.2.13 operating systems. All programming is done in C, and processes communicate and are sequenced and synchronized via the Task Control Architecture .

Communication with Amelia is graphical (via the laptop), remote (via zephyr), and speech-driven. An off-board Next computer runs the Sphinx real-time, speaker-independent speech recognition system and a text-to-speech board provides speech generation. Thus, we can give verbal commands to the robot and the robot can respond verbally to indicate its status. In addition, a graphical user interface is available for giving commands and monitoring the robot's status.

The Skinnerbots research is also being carried out on Amelia.

Last Updated: 17Mar96