Commercial Robotics

XV-11: Neato Robot Vacuum or Roomba Killer?

Posted 11 Jan 2010 at 19:30 UTC by steve Share This

The XV-11 aims to be both. It's a new robot vacuum that hopes to challenge the Roomba. While the two robots look superficially similar, they take very different approaches to their work. Camp Peavy, who works at Neato Robotics, writes,

Silicon Valley has a contender! "Neato Robotics" has just announced the XV-11. Available First Quarter 2010. This robot uses a laser rangefinder (Room Positioning System) to SLAM (Simultaneous Localization and Mapping) its environment; allowing the XV-11 to bound the perimeter of a room and then methodically clean the interior with straight lines avoiding obstacles along the way.

The Roomba users Rodney Brooks' biomemetic subsumption approach to robotics, in which intelligent, life-like behavior emerges from layers of very simple behaviors. The XV-11, on the other hand takes a very traditional hard-AI approach that involves building internal representations of its environment using laser rangefinders and SLAM. So while a vacuuming Roomba looks like a wandering insect, the XV-11 looks more like the Terminator, taking a methodical, straight line, back-and-forth approach. For more, see the Neato XV-11 FAQ, the additional coverage in Wired, PCMag, and Ubergizmo or click read more to see the official marketing video with some nice shots of the XV-11 in action.

Did I mention the laser rangefinder? :), posted 11 Jan 2010 at 20:18 UTC by steve » (Master)

Travis Deyle points out that even if we forget the robot, it's worth buying these things to get the ultra low cost laser range finders inside. Much better than $5k for a SICK scanner. See his blog post with details of the scanner.

Sticks and stones but Buzzwords ouch!, posted 12 Jan 2010 at 15:05 UTC by The Swirling Brain » (Master)

Looks like this robot will SLAM the competition!

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