Title:
Robots for Humanity: A Case Study in Assistive Mobile Manipulation

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Author(s)
Chen, Tiffany L.
Ciocarlie, Matei
Cousins, Steve
Grice, Phillip M.
Hawkins, Kelsey
Hsiao, Kaijen
Kemp, Charles C.
King, Chih-Hung
Lazewatsky, Daniel A.
Nguyen, Hai
Paepcke, Andreas
Pantofaru, Caroline
Smart, William D.
Takayama, Leila
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Abstract
Assistive mobile manipulators have the potential to one day serve as surrogates and helpers for people with disabilities, giving them the freedom to perform tasks such as scratching an itch, picking up a cup, or socializing with their families. This article introduces a collaborative project with the goal of putting assistive mobile manipulators into real homes to work with people with disabilities. Through a participatory design process in which users have been actively involved from day one, we are identifying and developing assistive capabilities for the PR2 robot. Our approach is to develop a diverse suite of open source software tools that blend the capabilities of the user and the robot. Within this article, we introduce the project, describe our progress, and discuss lessons we have learned.
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2013-03
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