Hitachi Unveils Roving Security Robot

Hitachi is working on an R2D2-like security robot on wheels that can map out its surroundings using infrared sensors and a camera to detect missing items, suspicious packages and intruders.

The 22-inch tall robot, which looks like a trash can and is reminiscent of the small, beeping robot in "Star Wars," has a swiveling camera that protrudes like a periscope, enabling it to watch for suspicious changes in the landscape and send photos to a guard, Hitachi said Tuesday.

The Japanese electronics maker has no commercial product plans so far but believes the roving robot, which can figure out the best route to a spot on its own, is better than the stationary cameras now common for security, researcher Toshio Moriya said.

The prototype, which has a laptop aboard with a wireless connection, still has plenty of hurdles to clear, such as prolonging battery life, company officials said. And it can't dodge obstacles or recognize things smaller than a coke bottle.

Tokyo-based Hitachi didn't even show the robot to reporters, saying it was being upgraded. Shown instead were video clips of the machine scuttling around an office like a vacuum cleaner.

Various universities and companies, including Japanese automaker Honda Motor Co., have created and displayed robots that recognize its location and movements.

But many such robots require marks on the floor to pick up on its cameras. Another way robots figure out where they are is by global position system, using satellites.


  • Microsoft Ups Its Windows 10 App Compatibility Assurances

    Microsoft gave assurances this week that organizations adopting Windows 10 likely won't face application compatibility issues.

  • SharePoint Online Users To Get 'Modern' UI Push in April

    Microsoft plans to alter some of the tenant-level blocking capabilities that may have been set up by organizations and deliver its so-called "modern" user interface (UI) to Lists and Libraries for SharePoint Online users, starting in April.

  • How To Use PowerShell Splatting

    Despite its weird name, splatting can be a really handy technique if you create a lot of PowerShell scripts.

  • New Microsoft Customer Agreement for Buying Azure Services To Start in March

    Microsoft will have a new approach for organizations buying Azure services called the "Microsoft Customer Agreement," which will be available for some customers starting as early as this March.

comments powered by Disqus
Most   Popular

Office 365 Watch

Sign up for our newsletter.

Terms and Privacy Policy consent

I agree to this site's Privacy Policy.