Conference paper

Building a Fully Autonomous Tour Guide Robot: Where Academic Research Meets Industry

This paper presents the effort that has been undertaken in designing and building both hardware and software for a fully autonomous navigating vehicle aimed for a tour guide application. The challenge for such a project is to combine industrial high quality production for the mobile platforms with techniques for mobile robot navigation and interaction which are currently best available in academic research. For this the experience and technology of the Autonomous Systems Lab at EPFL has been extended with the industry-driven knowledge of BlueBotics SA, a young enterprise which aims to help taking robots out of the university offices and putting them into real-world applications. The goal of the project is to maximize the autonomy and interactivity of the mobile platform while ensuring high robustness, reliability and performance. The result, called RoboX, is an interactive moving machine which can operate in human environments and interact by seeing humans, talking to and looking at them, showing icons and asking them to answer its questions. Keywords: tour guide robot, navigation, interaction, product

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