Robots are pretty big at the moment, and the latest one to come to our attention is a ‘Shark’ Robot from the Veter project team. But this project is more than just a robot (which, incidentally, is 3D printable), it is about creating a reasonably priced open robotics platform.
Throughout 2012, the Veter project team spent a considerable amount of time building the new version of its robotics vehicle, the result of which is a small tracked vehicle that the team believes will be of interest to researchers in robotics, AI, computer vision as well as DIY enthusiasts. The reasoning behind this belief is that such researchers often waste a great deal of time building robotic vehicles to verify their software ideas but by utilising the Veter robot they will be able to focus directly on their research instead of solving standard mechanical and low-level control issues.
All the CAD models, assembling instructions and software for the Veter robot are open source.
According to the team: “By embracing the open software and hardware paradigm we and our customers have access to a vibrant and large community of developers and designers. By shifting complexity to the software and simplifying hardware we were able to reduce costs to a very competitive level.”
Two new versions of the robot are also under development, one with wheels and another with a Microsoft Kinnect sensor.