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Bandai to Create Doraemon Robots

posted on 2003-01-18 02:21 EST
Licenses software from Californians company

Last week California based Evolution Robotics announced that Bandai Japan had licensed their Evolution Robotics Software Platform from them to be used in an upcoming Robot modeled after Doraemon, one of Japan's most popular Anime and Manga characters.

Details about Evolution Robotics can be read on their website at www.evolution.com.

Details about Doraemon can be read in our Encyclopedia (follow the green link).

Excerpts from Press Release:

Jan. 8, 2003--Evolution Robotics(TM) Inc. announced today that Bandai Co., Ltd. (Tokyo Stock Exchange: 7967.T), has chosen to license the Evolution Robotics Software Platform ("ERSP(TM)") to develop a new personal robot product modeled on the popular Doraemon character.
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The third largest toy company in the world, Bandai is the pioneer behind well known character toys, such as Power Rangers, Tamagotchi!, Gundam and Digimon, and who brings those characters' worlds to life further through apparel, confectioneries, video game software, network content, amusement equipment , and other life-style products. One of Bandai's latest initiatives is focused on the creation of a new personal robot, built around the already successful Bandai character, Doraemon, a cat-like robot which will be developed by 2005 and targeted as an entertainment and educational Personal Robot at families in Japan and Asia.

The ERSP was chosen by Bandai to accelerate the development of the Doraemon personal robot, significantly reducing its lead-time to market and infusing it with advanced robotics functionality that will allow the personal robot to play together with children. The ERSP's distinctive navigation and vision capabilities, coupled with its rich infrastructure, allow the real-time decision-making and control of autonomous robots like Bandai's. The partnership with Bandai underscores Evolution Robotics long-term vision of a personal robot in every home, by helping manufacturers to introduce robotic technologies into new and existing products and successfully launch them into the marketplace.

The software architecture behind the ERSP is an extensible open platform enabling the seamless integration of software, hardware and complex applications that can make possible highly functional personal robots. The platform's core software modules consist of a number of key technologies that eliminate the need for high-cost hardware and offer increased value to the manufacturer. This combined solution enables the development of affordable, yet advanced robotics products. The software modules include autonomous and safe navigation, visual object recognition, human-robot interaction using speech and gesture, and robot emotions and personality, which enable rich robotic applications to be used in the areas of child education, entertainment, communication, home security and personal assistance. The ERSP is accompanied by a comprehensive set of software development tools, including various APIs, toolboxes, and tutorials that allow developers to create enhanced robotic capabilities quickly and easily.

Evolution Robotics also offers expertise spanning the entire robotics product lifecycle, providing a full range of professional services to help OEMs design, develop and bring state-of-the-art personal robots and robotic technologies to market.

While plans for the Doraemon personal robot are still being developed, Bandai will be positioning it as an educational companion that entertains children while helping them learn. The personal robot will act as a hub of information that is responsive to its environment and interacts with family members.

"Part of our philosophy at Bandai is to maximize the value of our most popular branded characters and since robotics is extremely popular here in Japan, we decided to build a robotic version of Doraemon, and introduce it to younger children as an educational toy that they can bond with and which will support their ongoing learning and development. It is our desire for the robot to be an educational partner," commented Haga-san of Bandai. "The extensive library of behaviors and ready-to-use components offered through Evolution Robotics robust software platform underpinned our decision to move forward with this project, especially in light of the fact we knew our development time would be cut dramatically, allowing us to introduce the new toy out into the market much more quickly than if we had to rely on building this from the ground up."

"This partnership is an important benchmark for Evolution Robotics. As our first major OEM partnership we are looking forward to embedding our technology into Bandai's product and hope this marks the first step to seeing the ERSP become standard building blocks to a whole host of new robotic products and applications", added Bernard Louvat, CEO of Evolution Robotics.

About Evolution Robotics

Evolution Robotics(TM), www.evolution.com, develops and licenses state-of-the-art robotics software technologies and applications that assist manufacturers in bringing robotics products to market.

The Evolution Robotics Software Platform or ERSP(TM) includes a state-of-the-art robotics software architecture, application development tools and core robotic functionality modules such as object recognition, visual navigation, speech recognition, and human-robot interaction. In January 2003, Evolution Robotics introduced a new multi-purpose personal robot built entirely using the ERSP that demonstrates the extent of the software platform's capabilities. The company also makes its technologies available to the developer community through the ER1(TM), a programmable robot kit that can be purchased on the Evolution Robotics website and at leading technology retailers. Evolution Robotics mission is to accelerate the personal robot industry and help spur the creation of a variety of highly functional personal robot products that will become indispensable in our daily lives, at home and at work

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