RoboDevelopment – toys and humanoids dominate commercial market

Industrial Robot

ISSN: 0143-991x

Article publication date: 22 August 2008



(2008), "RoboDevelopment – toys and humanoids dominate commercial market", Industrial Robot, Vol. 35 No. 5.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2008, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

RoboDevelopment – toys and humanoids dominate commercial market

Article Type: News From: Industrial Robot: An International Journal, Volume 35, Issue 5

The RoboDevelopment Conference and Exposition, an international technical design and development event for the personal, service, and mobile robotics industry, was held in San Jose, California on 25-26 October 2007. The conference was sponsored by Robotic Trends, which billed the show as “the first technical event for the robotics industry that is focused on the design and development of commercial mobile robots and intelligent systems products”. The event drew an estimated 1,000 attendees, 56 sponsors, and 28 exhibitors.

The RoboDevelopment Conference and Exposition featured many industry innovations including:

  • Start-up Willow Garage announced a new standardized personal robotics platform.

  • WowWee and Evolution Robotics announced a partnership to bring breakthrough consumer robotics products to market.

  • Braintech released new vision software for service robots.

  • Robots Objective Interface Systems (OIS) announced complete middleware solutions for robotics.

  • Hanson Robotics and Anybots, Inc. unveiled their humanoid robots.

Willow Garage, a privately funded company based in Menlo Park, California, is developing a hardware and software platform for personal-assistant robots, autonomous boats, and unmanned cars. The platform is intended to give developers a standard set of tools for robotics development and to accelerate that development once an affordable platform is available. The company also announced a grant to the Stanford University Computer Science Lab in the amount of $850,000 for continued development of an open source software application for personal robotics.

WowWee Limited of Hong Kong, and Evolution Robotics, Inc. of Pasadena, California are launching a new category of breakthrough entertainment robots, functional robots, and robotic toys. At least three products are planned for release in 2009, with additional products under development. Each product will be powered by Evolution Robotics’ latest NorthStar®2.0 Technology and deliver breakthrough robotic capabilities for the robot and robotic toy mass market.

Braintech, Inc., a public company headquartered out of North Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, and a leading provider of Robot Vision Software, announced the release of Version 1.5 of its new robot vision technologies suite, named VOLTS-IQ™ SDK. Designed to work with Microsoft Robotics Studio, VOLTS-IQ SDK provides robotic developers with the ability to add visual intelligence to their projects and products. The new technologies enable a robot to track objects of interest in real-time, and acquire and locate new tracking targets as they come into view.

OIS, a Herndon, Virginia-based provider of the most widely deployed communications middleware for real-time and embedded systems, unveiled its own OIS Robotics Platform at RoboDevelopment, a complete communications infrastructure which simplifies development and sets a new security standard for robotics systems.

Hanson Robotics of Richardson, Texas, demonstrated their groundbreaking, new Zeno humanoid robot, a next generation robot that is able to speak, learn, and interact with people and surroundings, all wirelessly controlled by a PC.

Anybots, Inc., located in Mountain View, California, publicly demonstrated its humanoid robots for the first time at RoboDevelopment. Anybots has developed the first humanoid robot of its kind that walks dynamically and can jump.

For further information on RoboDevelopment ’07, please visit the web site:, or e-mail

Joanne Pransky

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