On a recent afternoon in the science center, Marvin, Armstrong, James and Liu were working on navigation. Marvin and Armstrong are robots; James and Liu, robotics students who have been working with them.

Marvin, the humanoid robot, is named for the paranoid android in Douglas Adams’s The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. He is controlled by voice and sound commands. Armstrong is a quadricopter drone whose namesake is the late astronaut Neil Armstrong. Armstrong has his own wireless access point and figures out for himself which way is up, after which he is controlled via laptop computer. A third robot, Speedy, named for Isaac Asimov’s robot, is a Turtlebot, who had the day off on filming day.

James Mochizuki-Freeman ‘16 (Alma, Wis.) is majoring in computer science and neuroscience studies and Liang Liu ’15 (Weifang City, China), who goes by Liu, is majoring in computer science with a minor in mathematics. They work with computer science professor Susan Fox in her robotics lab.

January 16 2015

Back to top