Hate Ironing? There’s a Machine Learning-Powered Robot for That

It’s not as unpleasant as scrubbing the toilet. It’s not as smelly as cleaning the cat litter box. But the tedious task of ironing ranks among the most reviled household chores. You’re still on your own when it comes to cleaning the porcelain throne or scooping up after kitty. But one day you could hand the laundry over to a machine learning-powered ironing robot, developed by researchers at Columbia University, that can iron shirts, skirts and more. Robots can easily manipulate rigid objects like coffee cups or computer parts. But they’re often confounded by soft, flexible objects, like clothes, that change shape as they’re handled. “Robotic ironing is a very challenging task,” said Yinxiao Li, lead author on a paper set to be published at the IEEE International Conference on Robotics. To…


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