Robots are good at a lot of things, but their track record at picking up objects is poor. So just how hard is it to teach one to pick up an object on demand from a table full of clutter?
That’s what a team from Carnegie Mellon University have been trying to find out. Pictured here is Baxter: a modern two-armed industrial robot that usually performs repetitive task in factories. But instead of having it do its usual business, the researchers decided to try and get it to work out how to pick up objects in a more unstructured environment — otherwise known as a table full of junk.