| Tree Map | Print Version | Help
Summary| News| Events| Forums| Links| Documents| Web Forms| Stats| Search
 
What's Happening at the UofM?
 
Day Week Month
PreviousJune 2008Next
SMTWTFS
1234567
891011121314
15161718192021
22232425262728
293012345
Oct 21, 2017
 
 
U of M Publications
News Releases
The Bulletin
 
External Media Links
CJOB 68
Winnipeg Free Press
CBC Manitoba
Environment Canada
Brandon Sun
Winnipeg Sun
The Manitoban
Globe and Mail
National Post
Maclean's
University Affairs
CBC.ca
CTV Newsworld
CNN
BBC
The Economist
 

GOOOOOAAAALLLLL!
Posted Wednesday, June 18, 2008 9:46 AM
 

The Canadian team is expected to score at the World Cup!

The robot World Cup, that is.

This July, several robots and their attendant humans from the University of Manitoba will be heading to China for RoboCup 2008. This international competition pits automatons from around the world against one another as they walk, run and play soccer for world titles.

“This is a very big deal,” says John Anderson, computer science, co-director with Jacky Baltes of the Autonomous Agents Laboratory in the Engineering and Information Technology Complex. “These competitions show how advanced robots have become and where the research is headed.”

Anderson, Baltes and their students have entered their robots in games and tests in RoboCup and other international games that parallel the “human” World Cup of soccer and the Summer Olympics. This year, the Manitoba team will also be testing a microrobot that is only about the size of a quarter.

Anderson explains: “The microrobots actually play on the surface of a television monitor, which broadcasts a soccer field or any other background we want for the robot's ‘world.’ This kind of project is an example of what is known as a ‘mixed reality application.” “It’s like a Star Trek ‘holodeck’ for robots,” he adds.

The team has robots that can kick soccer balls, walk, run and interact with humans and even other robots. But while many robots today are very sophisticated and cost millions of dollars, they design and build our autonomous agents for only a few hundred dollars.

The humanoid robot, which walks over to a ball and kicks it, is driven using an ordinary cellphone. And how does the robot “see” the ball? Through the cellphone camera, of course.

“It’s a very ingenious design,” Anderson notes.

Watch one of the robots in action:

 
For more information, contact:
Chris Rutkowski
Media Relations Coordinator
Marketing Communications Office
rutkows@ms.umanitoba.ca
Phone: (204) 474-9514
Fax: (204) 474-7631