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Fascinating World of Robotics

Fun with Robotics @ Center Of Excellence – BGSIAS

COE emphasizes the institution’s core values and is committed to the development of students according to the IB learner profile or the IGCSE standards. COE prepares students to grow up into knowledgable, life long learners. Students are exposed to top trending technologies like robotics, programming, machine learning, and artificial intelligence. As a result of this, students will emerge with flying colors, empowered with 21st-century skills.

Programming is an essential skill for robotics. Excellent cognitive skills, judgment and decision making, problem-solving, persistence, and good communication skills are some of the important skills that are to be developed by a student interested to pursue robotics. Applied mathematics and technology design too are areas of specialization for a robotics enthusiast.

At COE, students learn to code and hence control robots. Students also enjoy building robots from scratch. Further, they learn to control the movement, perform obstacle detection, and make the robots speak. A concept-driven curriculum coupled with inquiry-based learning at COE helps the students, acquire the skills necessary for an aspirant in the robotic field.

What is Robotics?

Robotics is the convergence of science, electronics, computer science, artificial intelligence, mechatronics, nanotechnology, bioengineering, and technology which produces machines, called robots, that replicate human actions. Some of the characters like R2-D2, Optimus Prime, WALL-E in movies are exaggerated, humanoid concepts of robots that usually seem like a caricature of the real thing.

Robot-Computer Controlled machine

A robot is defined as a computerized system with a motorized construction capable of interacting with the environment. It usually contains sensors, which give feedback data about the robot’s current situation, and a system to process this information so that subsequent action can be determined.

Robots are ready to perform repetitive tasks quickly, precisely, and accurately than humans. Most advanced robot arms make use of sensors like motion and pressure sensors to detect obstacles.

Characteristics of Robots

All robots contain some kind of mechanical construction. The mechanical aspect of a robot helps to complete tasks within the environment that it is designed.

Robots require various electrical components that control and power the machinery. Essentially, an electrical current/ a battery is required to power the majority of robots.

Robots contain a minimum level of computer programming. Robots perform tasks only when are programmed with a set of code or else it would just be another piece of simple machinery. Inserting a program into a robot gives it the ability to understand when and how to carry out a task.

Types of Robots

Mechanical bots are designed in all various shapes and sizes to efficiently carry out the task. Robots are emerging to carry out tasks that humans simply cannot perform. Generally, there are five types of robots.

Pre-Programmed Robots

Pre-programmed robots work in a controlled environment to do simple, repetitive tasks. These robots cannot change their behavior while they are working, and no human is needed to guide their actions. An example of a pre-programmed robot can be a mechanical arm on an automotive assembly line. The function of the arm is to weld a door on, to insert a certain part into the engine, etc.

The most familiar pre-programmed robots are feasibly used to build cars in most automobile plants around the world. There are similar robots that operate on the human body, and not on cars. 

Humanoid Robots

Humanoid robots are robots that replicate human behavior. They provide value by automating tasks which results in cost-saving and increased productivity. Humanoid robots are a relatively new form of professional service robots which are designed for functional purpose. Humanoid robots are used for research, space exploration, education, as personal assistants, manufacturing and maintenance, healthcare, at power plants to relieve human workers of laborious and dangerous tasks. 

For example, The Smart Field Hospital, in Wuhan, China, is staffed with robots. The humanoid robots donated by CloudMinds Technology, a Silicon Valley company are used to disinfect, measure temperatures, deliver food and medicine.   

Autonomous Robots

Autonomous robots are typically designed to carry out tasks independently in open environments that do not require human supervision and are not as tightly controlled as pre-programmed robots.

The Roomba vacuum cleaner, which uses sensors to roam throughout a home freely is an Autonomous robot.

Tele-operated Robots

Tele-operated robots are mechanical bots that are controlled by humans. These robots are usually helpful in situations where there is a necessity to control objects from a distance like in extreme geographical or weather conditions, underwater operations, surgical procedures, atomic/nuclear centers, etc.

The underwater robots that helped to fix the oil leak in the Gulf of Mexico were teleoperated. The robotic arm on the Space Shuttle is also a teleoperated robot. MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL) came up with a VR-based controller recently for Teleoperated Robots using an Oculus Rift headset.

Augmented Robots

Augmented robots either enhance current human capabilities or replace the capabilities a human may have lost. Some robots are connected directly to the human user’s body. Movements of the user’s body ultimately control a robotic effector of some kind. These robots can either enhance the user’s natural skill in some way or give them a skill they have lost e.g. a robotic prosthetic arm. These robots can give humans the lifting power of giants and the dexterity of a surgeon. Modern prosthetics can be complex electronic devices that learn to respond to neural signals sent by the patient.

Computer Controlled Devices

What is a Computer-Controlled device?

Technology has reached most aspects of our life such as banking, telecom, communication, health, engineering, or automated processes. Computer-controlled devices not only make our lives convenient but also enable us to make important decisions. Computer-controlled devices have become a part of our daily life. Few of them are simple while some others are complex in their functions.

A computer-controlled device accepts physical inputs from an external source and pairs this information with computer-controlled instructions to perform specific functions.

 Need for device Control

An impact system manages, commands, directs, or regulates the behavior of other devices or systems using control loops. It can range from home heating controller employing a thermostat controlling a domestic boiler to large Industrial control systems which are used for controlling processes or machines.

As companies and organizations become more interconnected than ever before, external devices and removable media are commonplace tools needed to finish daily business operations. While these devices make it easier for professionals to finish their tasks and collaborate with colleagues, they also pose a threat to enterprise data and function as a possible entry point for malware. Once copied to a removable device, sensitive data is faraway from the organization’s control and protection.

Chatbot

A chatbot can help automate the process of addressing general queries from students, staff, and website visitors like admission schedule, admission process, contact person, course information. With Natural Language Processing and Artificial Intelligence, chatbots can perform speech recognition, learn from past data, and reply to queries.

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