Imagine: We all know how hot engine and server rooms can get, and despite last month’s article advising the best ways to keep servers cool sometimes the heat can get overwhelming and/or dangerous. Why risk collapsing when you can send in a robot that has been built for operating in areas that are too dangerous for human rescue workers, to first put in place some emergency cooling devices. Tend to any server emergencies in comfort, not whilst drowning in sweat.
Tell me more: The Walk-Man is a humanoid robot that can interact with its surroundings and use human tools. It is over 6ft tall, and uses a 3D laser scanner and a stereovision system to help it navigate its surroundings. It uses both its upper and lower body to provide balance and generate motion, meaning it moves in a more ‘human’ way. Powered by a 2KWh battery and equipped with colour cameras, it can either operate autonomously using planning algorithms or can be controlled from a safe distance.
Superyacht ready? Potentially yes, but not yet on market. Created by the University of Pisa and the Italian Institute of Technology and funded by the EU, the engineers behind it are currently trying to equip Walk-Man with more advanced cognitive abilities so that eventually it can work completely independently. Currently, a human operator is needed for more complicated tasks. However, demos of the robot show it is capable of walking and opening doors, and its large fingers and powerful limbs allow it to move heavy obstacles. This means it is likely capable of carrying a fan or two into the server room. The Walk-Man could also be useful helping with general heavy-lifting around the yacht.