RS Media


RS Media

The RS Media is another product in WowWee's line of biomorphic robots, based on a walking system designed by Mark Tilden. The RS Media uses basically the same body as the Robosapien V2, but a different brain based on a Linux kernel. As the name implies, the RS Media's focus is on multimedia capabilities, including the ability to record and playback audio, pictures and video. It retains and builds upon the Robosapien V2's sensor array and programmability.

Hardware

* Two primary processors:
** 200MHz ARM9 with 64MB of flash RAM for the primary LINUX operating system and user files
** Custom 16 bit processor for handling the biomorphic robot functions
* 1 USB port
* Stereo audio plug
* SD card slot (accepts up to 1GB cards)
* VGA color camera in the forehead for image recognition, and video recording
* 20kHz microphone in the chest for audio recording
* 1.9" 176x132 pixel color TFT supertwist LCD screen in its chest
* 11W 3-speaker system (2 x metal speakers + 1 back-mounted woofer)
* Power-adapter port in foot
* 12 motors based on the configuration found in the Robosapien V2

Sensors

* 3 infrared (IR) detectors that use IR ranging for object detection
* VGA quality camera in its forehead for video and human-tracking abilities
* 3 sound sensors for sound localization and audio recording
* 2 touch sensors on the back of each hand
* 1 toe and 1 heel touch sensor in each foot

Software

Unlike previous products in WowWee's Robo line of products, the RS Media is the first to feature bundled PC software. There are 4 applications: the BodyCon Editor, the Personality Editor, the Macro Editor, and the Media Organizer.

BodyCon Editor:The BodyCon Editor allows the user to customize and preview the RS Media movements. The user can create a sequence of movements as well as voice and sound effects and save everything in a file for playback in the future. This file can also be included in a personality or to a user-created Macro.

Personality Editor:The RS Media expands on the single personality that original Robosapien models came with, and comes with 4 different personalities (see below for more information). It also allows you to create your own personality from scratch.

Macro Editor:The Macro Editor is actually a subcomponent of the Personality Editor, but it warrants its own description. The user can create their own macros which are sequences of commands that the RS Media can execute. Macros can also include conditional routines that are based on environmental or user feedback.

Media Organizer:The Media Organizer gives the user a GUI interface to manage the audio, images, video, games, and personalities on the RS Media. Files can be uploaded, downloaded, deleted and moved around. The robot would need to be connected to the computer running the Media Organizer software using a USB cable.

Personalities

A personality is a collection of the RS Media's audio responses. The RS Media ships with 4 personalities that the user can switch among using the remote control:

* RS Media (default)
* Service Bot 3000 - an English butler.
* Space Bot - a fictional space captain
* Billy-Joe Sapien - a cowboy

Users may also modify the existing personalities or create their own from scratch.

Multimedia features

The RS Media is capable of recording and playing MP3's, MPEG4's, JPEG's, as well as Java applications. It comes with 3 Java games that are controlled with the remote control and displayed to its LCD screen. It can also be used as an audio player via the stereo line-in port. The built-in memory can be supplemented by inserting an SD memory card (up to 1GB in size) into the SD slot.

Programming

Like other WowWee robots, the RS Media can be programmed to execute sequences of moves and audio clips either as a standalone program or as a reaction to a sound, touch or visual stimulus. The RS Media has an additional programming mode, called Puppet Mode, where the user can manually bend and move the robot's body parts to create a program. The most sophisticated way to program the RS Media is by use of the computer applications.

Hacking

As with other Robosapien models, the RS Media was also designed with the possibility for modifications. In reference to the philosophy behind the 'hackability' of the robots, Tilden once said, "Years ago some bright AI lads asked if I could build a competent humanoid cradle into which they could put their smart programs. Took me a while, but here it is lads, inexpensive and ready to go right out of the box. Make it think, and let me know how it goes."

Availability

The RS Media was released in October 2006 in Australia and the UK. It should be available in North America either in the summer or 3rd quarter of 2008.

External links

* [http://www.rsmediaonline.com/ RS Media at Wow Wee]
* [http://www.robocommunity.com/category/12/RS-Media RS Media Home] on [http://www.robocommunity.com RoboCommunity] - The official WowWee Robotics user community
* [http://www.robosapien.tk/ Unofficial WowWee Hacks and Mods site]
* [http://www.robotsrule.com/robosapien-v3-blog/blogger.html Robosapien RS Media Review] - Blog with tips, tricks, and update news
* [http://www.robocommunity.com/group/5/RS-Media-Personalities/ RS Media Personalities] - Download new RS Media personalities.


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