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  1. As many robot automation applications increasingly rely on multi-core processing or deep-learning models, cloud computing is becoming an attractive and economically viable resource for systems that do not contain high computing power onboard. Despite its immense computing capacity, it is often underused by the robotics and automation community due to lack of expertise in cloud computing and cloud-based infrastructure. Fog Robotics balances computing and data between cloud edge devices. We propose a software framework, FogROS, as an extension of the Robot Operating System (ROS), the de-facto standard for creating robot automation applications and components. It allows researchers to deploy componentsmore »of their software to the cloud with minimal effort, and correspondingly gain access to additional computing cores, GPUs, FPGAs, and TPUs, as well as predeployed software made available by other researchers. FogROS allows a researcher to specify which components of their software will be deployed to the cloud and to what type of computing hardware. We evaluate FogROS on 3 examples: (1) simultaneous localization and mapping (ORB-SLAM2), (2) Dexterity Network (Dex-Net) GPU-based grasp planning, and (3) multi-core motion planning using a 96-core cloud-based server. In all three examples, a component is deployed to the cloud and accelerated with a small change in system launch configuration, while incurring additional latency of 1.2 s, 0.6 s, and 0.5 s due to network communication, the computation speed is improved by 2.6x, 6.0x and 34.2x, respectively.« less
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available August 23, 2022
  2. Network latency is a major problem in Cloud Robotics for human robot interactions such as teleoperation. Routing delays can be highly variable in a heterogeneous computing environment, imposing challenges to reliably teleoperate a robot with a closed-loop feedback controller. By sharing Gaussian Mixture Models (GMMs), Hidden Semi- Markov Models (HSMMs), and linear quadratic tracking (LQT) con- trollers between the cloud and the robot. We build a motion recognition, segmentation, and synthesis framework for Cloud Robotic teleoperation; and we introduce a set of latency mitigation network protocols under this framework. We use this framework in experiments with a dynamic robot armmore »to perform learned hand-written letter motions.We then study the motion recognition errors, motion synthesis errors, and the latency mitigation performance.« less
  3. We propose a federated edge-computing architecture for management of data. Our vision is to enable a service provider model for “data-services”, where a user can enter into economic agreements with an infrastructure maintainer to provide storage and communication of data, without necessarily trusting the infrastructure provider. Toward this vision, we present cryptographically hardened cohesive collections of data items called DataCapsules, and an overview of the underlying federated architecture, called Global Data Plane.
  4. The growing demand of industrial, automotive and service robots presents a challenge to the centralized Cloud Robotics model in terms of privacy, security, latency, bandwidth, and reliability. In this paper, we present a ‘Fog Robotics’ approach to deep robot learning that distributes compute, storage and networking resources between the Cloud and the Edge in a federated manner. Deep models are trained on non-private (public) synthetic images in the Cloud; the models are adapted to the private real images of the environment at the Edge within a trusted network and subsequently, deployed as a service for low-latency and secure inference/prediction formore »other robots in the network. We apply this approach to surface decluttering, where a mobile robot picks and sorts objects from a cluttered floor by learning a deep object recognition and a grasp planning model. Experiments suggest that Fog Robotics can improve performance by sim-to-real domain adaptation in comparison to exclusively using Cloud or Edge resources, while reducing the inference cycle time by 4 to successfully declutter 86% of objects over 213 attempts.« less
  5. Driven by advances in computer vision and the falling costs of camera hardware, organizations are deploying video cameras en masse for the spatial monitoring of their physical premises. Scaling video analytics to massive camera deployments, however, presents a new and mounting challenge, as compute cost grows proportionally to the number of camera feeds. This paper is driven by a simple question: can we scale video analytics in such a way that cost grows sublinearly, or even remains constant, as we deploy more cameras, while inference accuracy remains stable, or even improves. We believe the answer is yes. Our key observationmore »is that video feeds from wide-area camera deployments demonstrate significant content correlations (e.g. to other geographically proximate feeds), both in space and over time. These spatio-temporal correlations can be harnessed to dramatically reduce the size of the inference search space, decreasing both workload and false positive rates in multi-camera video analytics. By discussing use-cases and technical challenges, we propose a roadmap for scaling video analytics to large camera networks, and outline a plan for its realization.« less