Smile for the camera!


It’s estimated that 3.5 trillion photos have been taken since the first pinhole camera. Even if you account for population growth the progression of photography is mind boggling. Did you know that we take 4 times as many photos compared to 10 years ago and Facebook currently hosts over 140 billion of them, with an additional 70 billion more expected this year? (1000memories.com)

Technology has made it possible to capture images of every party, birthday, summer BBQ and family gathering in rich detail while sharing them with friends around the world. So what does all of this have to do with Robotics? Greg Shirakyan, a developer on the Microsoft Robotics team, used Microsoft Robotics Developer Studio 4 (RDS4) and the first implementation of the RDS4 Reference Platform specifications from Parallax (EDDIE) to make it even easier to capture these memories.

Party Photographer aka Roborazzi

 

Greg’s party photographer is designed to wander autonomously, engaging people by detecting them using Microsoft Kinect’s skeletal tracking capabilities and once they’re in frame EDDIE snaps a pic. Once the image has been captured you can have the picture uploaded to Flickr. Roborazzi alleviates the need for individuals to capture the special memories at an event and allows them to focus their time on creating them. Watch the video below to see Roborazzi in action and a technical debrief of the project from Greg.

[View:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=io0pLVmY0O0]

 

What’s Next

Greg’s Roborazzi is a great solution that plays to relevant trends in human behavior however, it’s not the end all be all solution. What if Roborazzi merged all the photos of an event in a three-dimensional experience like “The Moment” , breaking the mold of presenting images in a timeline?  Images are not the only media that EDDIE can capture and parties are not the only scenario where innovative robotic solutions can be created. Your imagination is the limit.

If you have an idea for an at home robot show us what you got in our Robotics @Home Contest. If you want to learn more what’s going on with the Microsoft Robotics team join us on Facebook and Twitter. For technical assistance on building a robot with RDS4 join our developer community and keep an eye out for more @home solutions created by the Microsoft Robotics team.

Comments (5)

  1. Arthur Wait says:

    Nicely done! Clever use of the platform: makes good use of the core functionality, and then extends it nicely with the camera and flickr integration.

  2. @r0bErT4u says:

    Remember Rosie, the robot nanny on the Jetsons. iROBOT Roomba, the autonomous vacuums, have been here since 1990.  I was thinking a robot nanny should be a reality by now.  A companion for pets that could feed them, when your working late.  You could skype with your pets, girlfriend/boyfriend, family, or housemates.

    Robots to help the elderly & disabled.

  3. To make the pictures be relevent says:

    The art of being a photographer is also the art of catching important moments.

    For a party of two hours there can be as many as handreds of pictures. If the people should filter the pictures it's not user friendly. I propose to adjust the software to take pictures of faces, social events by identifying emotions on faces. I would also say that the robot needs to be vocally controlled. For example I would be happy to to say please take a picture of us and that robot will know how is us.

    Have fun!

  4. ken rinaldo says:

    Nice job replicating the Paparazzi Bots created by me in 2009 on the exact platform I invented for Parallax Incorporated. What is original is the use of the Kinect here though the concept has already been to the Vancouver Olympics 201 and to Nuit Blanche in Toronto. http://www.paparazzibot.com/

    and http://www.flickr.com/…/6221234926 you can see the nice shots they take.

  5. Venkat says:

    Simply awesome Greg !!!