If I have enough lego to need sorting
I could afford servants to do it for me.
An engineer has built something that is sure to be the envy of any self-respecting Lego fan: an AI-powered Lego sorting machine. Daniel West, a software engineer from Australia, built the device, which is also made out of Lego, of course, over two years. The impressive gizmo stands about 80 centimetres tall, contains over 10, …
If I ever happen to tidy my son's room a bit, perhaps even creating some clear floor space, this seems to be taken as an excellent opportunity to get some hot wheels track (or whatever else) to make best possible use of the space. Which is fine, but then a few days later the track layout is neglected and partly broken up, and now mostly constitutes a new mess that performed the same function as the old one.
The real question I have is can it find the smallest of cogs from technical Lego before I stand on them either:
(a) in my stockinged feet, causing sonic emissions in the kilohertz region.
(b) in my Doc Martens, rendering said part somewhat 2 dimensional.
I see your three-pin plugs (literally, they are HUGE) and raise you an eight-pin DIP ... The venerable 555 has a habit of landing pins-up just exactly where my heel is going to come down. I've stepped on 6 of the damn things over the years ... all drew blood, two of them left bits behind in the bone, requiring removal by a surgeon. No other IC has ever assaulted me, just the 555. Is it paranoia when they really are out to get you?
So this guy must be all of 9 years old then? (I add an extra year before the 2011 reveal of a Lego sorter because a baby less than a year old doesn't have goals, right?)
Don't get me wrong - it's a cool pet project and kudos to him for that. But I think the final comment is a bit of an overstatement.
Or at the very least, if a piece of the machine falls off, it'll try and file it away. There's something a little bit "wrong" about that however, kind of like someone knitting, not realising they're using wool from their own gradually unravelling jumper.
That apart, this is quite possibly the greatest use of AI I've heard about so far.
From reading the linked blog post, it seems like a large part of his problem was just classifying images accurately enough. I wonder how much it would cost to outsource that to amazon mechanical turk - would certainly speed up the process, and would also allow quicker experiments to see how having different kinds of images in the library affected the outcome.
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