Beer-fetching robot up for grabs

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London, Sep 15 (ANI): Fetching a can of beer, folding towels, plugging itself when needed recharge- a robot that can do all this and more is on sale.

Silicon Valley start-up Willow Garage has put its PR2 robot on general sale.

However, Willow Garage conceded that the price tag would deter all but the richest customers.

"This isn't pocket change," New Scientist quoted Keenan Wyrobeck of Willow Garage.

The most likely customers would be academic and corporate research labs, he said.

Tomas Lozano-Perez at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology received a PR2 during a beta-test giveaway programme earlier in the year.

"Many research groups will wish they had one. Funding at the required level can be difficult to find, though," said Wyrobeck.

Stefan Schaal's group at the University of Southern California, also has a PR2, and said its open software will help speed the rate of progress in robotics research.

"Every new group can directly build on a large body of knowledge that has already been added to the open software repository," he said. (ANI)

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