E02 Conor McGinn, Assistant Professor at Trinity College Robotics and Innovation Lab

    Welcome to episode two of AI in Action, the podcast that explores the applications and implications of data science, machine learning and Artificial Intelligence.

    Our goal is to share with you the insights of technologists and data science enthusiasts to showcase the excellent work that is been done within AI in Ireland.

    In today’s episode, I sit down with Conor McGinn who is the assistant professor at Trinity College’s Robotics and Innovation Lab.

    In November 2017, Conor and the team in the Robotics and Innovation Lab first unveiled their prototype care robot Stevie, which is designed to work in assisted care facilities to help the elderly and people living with disability in Ireland.

    The robot uses cameras along with depth, tactile, inertial and voltage sensors to interact intelligently with its environment. Sounds, lights, facial expressions and body language help it to communicate and respond appropriately to different situations, while on-board processors and wireless connectivity such as Wifi and Bluetooth diversify its potential uses. In addition to performing routine tasks in nursing homes and assisted care facilities, the robot can also interact socially with residents.

    The Trinity team consulted with a wide range of experts during the robot’s development, including nurses and caregivers, as well as elderly patients living in assisted care facilities. They aim to have Stevie market-ready by 2021 and over the next couple of years, they will be piloting the technology in several care facilities in both Ireland and the United States.

    In this podcast, you will learn about:

    • How Conor became interested in AI and Robotics
    • His experience working with the NASA Goddard Space Flight Centre
    • Creating Stevie, the care robot
    • The problems they are looking to solve with Stevie
    • The social benefits that Stevie can bring to the elderly community
    • Where he sees the future of AI and Robotics heading in the next few years
    • A need for discussion on ethics and consent with robots

     

     

    What did you make of Conor’s podcast? Where do you see the future of AI and robotics heading in the near future? I would love to hear your thoughts so please leave a comment below.

    If you would like to hear more from AI in Action then please subscribe and don’t forget to like and share with your friends on social media.

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