Engineers at Purdue University are developing robots that are able to make “educated guesses” and are better predictors of their environment and are able to better navigate.
According to Professor C.S. George Lee, who specializes in robotics:
A software algorithm enables the robots to make partial maps using a laser rangefinder and an odometer as they travel through an environment for the first time, the researchers said. The robots then refer to that partial map to predict what lies ahead.
The more repetitive the environment, the more accurate the prediction — and the easier it is for the robot to successfully navigate.
For example, it’s going to be easier to navigate a parking garage using this map because every floor is the same or very similar, and the same could be said for some office buildings.”