Industrial robots for working in factory environment were widely researched and lead enormous development in the 20th century. But the research subjects are moving to Service Robotics with the busy life style of humans in the 21st century. Humans have great concern in healthy life and do not want to get 3D jobs (difficult, dangerous and dirty) as well as repeated simple jobs. For these reasons, Service Robots which do these jobs instead of humans are the main focus of research nowadays.
As Service Robots perform their jobs in the same environment as humans, Service Robots should have essential abilities humans have. They should recognize faces, gestures, characters, objects, speech and atmosphere. They should find their way to reach the goal without collisions and destructions, and accomplish the task at hand successfully. They should grab and deliver some objects. They should communicate with humans based on emotion. These all research subjects are included in Service Robotics area.
This book consists of 18 chapters about current research results of service robots. Topics covered include various kinds of service robots, development environments, architectures of service robots, Human-Robot Interaction, networks of service robots and basic researches such as SLAM, sensor network, etc.
This book has some examples of the research activities on Service Robotics going on around the globe, but many chapters in this book concern advanced research on this area and cover interesting topics. Therefore I hope that all who read this book will find lots of helpful information and be interested in Service Robotics. I am really appreciative of all authors who have invested a great deal of time to write such interesting and high quality chapters.
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