Wouldn’t it be great to create your very own AI robot?
Let’s face it the world of robotics has been advancing at such a rapid rate, what with the addition of artificial intelligence. You could say that it has literally become the new gold rush. All big tech companies are eager to try to create the next best thing.
One of the most interesting yet challenging tasks with the field of AI would be to build an AI robot. One that combines both great technologies like ChatGPT and stable diffusion with life like robotic features. We can’t be the only ones looking forward to see what this industry release next, who knows androids might just be around the corner (well in the next decade or so).
If you, like many others were wondering how you can create your very own AI robot, then why not read through our guide. It gives you the steps involved in building your very own AI robot. We cover the key components, design considerations, programming aspects, and ethical implications, that go into creating your very own Artificial intelligent machine.
Defining the Purpose and Scope Of Your AI Robot
The very first step in building your own AI robot is to define it’s overall purpose “what does it do”. Does it have a viable function or what is known as a target audience. Let’s face it if your robot doesn’t serve a purpose or solve any problems us “humans” might have, it’s going to struggle to survive.
Write down some tasks that you want your robot to do here are some examples:
- household chores
- autonmous navigation
- chat bot
- data entry
- low level programming
- checking for bugs in code
- customer service skills
Please note these are just a few simple examples of what AI can currently achieve. You may want to add some of these together or come up with completely new ideas. Understanding the intended purpose of your robot is key to its overall design, hardware and of course any software requirements. For example if your robot does not require communication you will not need to implement this function.
Choosing the Hardware
When it comes to creating your very own robot, you might be thinking to yourself that it would be best to create the software first. Wrong. Hardware and moving parts are more important. If you don’t have them how on earth are you going to implement that into the overall design over your AI software.
When it comes to choosing hardware for your AI robot you will need consider what type of moving parts does it require. Is it a moving, legged, wheeled or even humanoid styled robot. Will it be using any sensors (cameras, LiDAR, ultrasonic, etc.). You really need to be asking yourself, how exactly are you going to power your robot? is it going to be wall mounted or run on powerful batteries.
One important thing you will need to consider when creating your very own robot is that you will need to come up with some sort of balance between performance, cost, and power efficiency that suits your robots requirements. We are not all billionaires so in the early development stages you might want to keep thing simple. For example if you want to create a chatbot start off with just a simple robot that sits on a desk, it does not need to be all singing and dancing to start with. Let’s face it if you robot becomes successful and investment floods in, well you could just add more features at a later date.
Selecting the Right Sensors
Ok this might be part of “hardware” but we feel it needs a section of it’s own because, let’s face it its rather in depth.
When it comes to creating your own robot, you will require sensors for a wide range of tasks. But it’s important to know that not all robots do require every single sensor on the market. So it’s really important to understand your use case. These sensors are not cheap, so make sure you really need them, before you take the commitment to placing them into your new creation.
Here is a brief list of some sensors that could be used with your AI Robot:
Only choose sensors that are useful for your robots intended purpose. Sure it might look cool if a chat bot can perform x ray scans, but is it really necessary for your end product? Ok if it’s going to be an android doctor maybe.
Implementing the AI
Let’s face it the heart of the AI robot you are going to create lies within it’s brain. If the artificial intelligence implemented is poor performing you are going to have a pretty rubbish robot. Machine learning techniques like deep learning have revolutionized the way robotics works. It has made it possible for “robots” to learn from data and improve their performance over time.
If you are wanting to implement AI into your robotic system then here are some steps you should consider following:
Data Collection: Gather relevant data that will be used to train the AI model. This data should be representative of the real-world scenarios the robot will encounter.
Data Preprocessing: Clean and preprocess the data to remove noise and irrelevant information, ensuring the data is ready for training.
AI Model Selection: Choose the appropriate AI model for the task at hand. There are two rather common AI networks you can look up:
- Convolutional Neural Networks (CNNs):often used when you require a robot to use vision-related tasks
- Recurrent Neural Networks (RNNs): RNNS are more suitable for using data and language processing, like the use with large language models.
Training the AI Model: Utilize frameworks like TensorFlow or PyTorch to train the AI model on the prepared dataset. This process may require significant computational resources and time.
Integration with Robotics: Integrate the trained AI model into the robot’s software stack, enabling it to make decisions and perform tasks based on the learned patterns.
Developing the Robot’s Control System
Once you have created a basic model of your robot and implemented a simple AI system, it is now time to join it all together.
The robot’s control system is responsible for processing sensor data, executing the AI algorithms, and driving the actuators to perform desired actions. This system should be designed for stability, real-time responsiveness, and fault tolerance. It can be achieved using traditional control methods or newer approaches like model predictive control.
Programming the Robot
Programming an AI robot involves developing the software infrastructure that enables different components to communicate and work together cohesively. Use programming languages like Python, C++, or ROS (Robot Operating System) to build the robot’s software stack. ROS, in particular, provides a framework for modular and distributed robotics software development.
Testing and Simulation
Before deploying the AI robot in real-world environments, conduct extensive testing and simulations. This ensures that the robot operates safely and efficiently while identifying and fixing potential issues. Simulation platforms like Gazebo or V-REP allow for virtual testing before real-world implementation.
Implementing Safety Measures
Safety is paramount when building an AI robot, especially if it will interact with humans or operate in dynamic environments. Implement safety measures like emergency stop buttons, collision detection, and safe operating limits. Additionally, consider ethical concerns, privacy, and security aspects.
Building an AI robot is an iterative process. Continuously collect feedback from real-world deployments, analyze performance metrics, and refine the AI algorithms. Iterative improvements are essential to enhance the robot’s capabilities and address any limitations or shortcomings.
No one said building your own robot was going to be easy. It’s not simple, it’s rather complex and it can cost a large amount of money too!
With the constant advances within artificall intelligence happening on what seems a daily basis, it’s just a matter of time before all of this become more easily affordable and accessible to the masses. You can already use advanced AI systems through API’s so in theory you could create an automated robot that just uses someone elses AI system.
Ask yourself do you want to make robots or do you want to create software for robots? Let us know what your opinion is in the comments below.