Let’s be honest. Who doesn’t want an industrial six-axis robot arm in their garage to do their bidding? Introducing [Madeline Gannon], the Robot Tamer!
The only tricky part is… if you received an industrial six-axis robot arm, would you be able to control it to do your bidding (easily)? Having taken robotics courses myself in college, and worked with ABB robots like this one, I can tell you, it’s not exactly plug-and-play. Yeah, there’s the teach pendant and you can pretty quickly teach the robot to do a repetitive task well, but unless you’re setting up your own mini manufacturing line — what’s the point? You’re going to want to inject some CNC code or something and have it carve you a sculpture! Or pour you a mixed drink I guess…
Maybe [Madeline] has the answer. Working as an artist in residence at Pier 9, she’s created wearable markers and a motion capture system that allows a giant ABB robot to see, and respond to your movements in a shared space.
It’s called Quipt, and it’s a gesture control software that allows you to interact with industrial robots in a completely new way. The user wears markers on their body that allow the robot to both recognize you, and follow or interact with you — without colliding.
At the heart of the project is a Vicon motion capture system, which then interacts with Robo.Op (GitHub) to generate movement commands for the robot. All of this data is also output for visualization on an Android app, so the user controlling the robot can see exactly what is going on.
For more information on the project, [Madeline] put up a cute instructable called “How to Tame your Robot”. Take a look!
[Thanks for the tip Charlie!]