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Can Autonomous Bots Deliver Essential Goods to At-Risk Communities?

While the pandemic has shut down many businesses and services that people rely on, there are still essential goods that must get to their destinations, such as medicine and food. But, for some at-risk populations hand delivery is not an option. We've talked about how technology has created valuable solutions during these unprecedented times and autonomous delivery bots are yet another example. During the AIIC's Back to Business with AI, we covered how these bots deliver goods when people can't.

Delivery Bots for Emergency and Healthcare Delivery

In the presentation, Konrad Konarski, Chairman of the AIIC, shared how autonomous bots can help during a crisis, such as the one we are experiencing in 2020. This global pandemic has forced many at risk communities to shelter at home to avoid getting sick. The problem is, these communities, the elderly and immunocompromised for example, generally require more medication and depend on the delivery of essential goods. Autonomous bots could be deployed to deliver these goods safely without fear of spreading any disease via human contact.

Delivery Bots for Business and Campus Delivery

The autonomous bot technology has become advanced enough that there is a low barrier of adoption for businesses, the investment is lower than you may think and implementation is simple. With the current global pandemic, autonomous bots are a great technology to adopt. 

To prove ROI for autonomous bot adoption, businesses should target operations that are repeatable and heavily manual. Examples of this include delivering parts in a manufacturing environment or facility management teams delivering supplies to different campus locations.

What Technology Goes into Autonomous Delivery Bots?

During the presentation, Konrad pulled back the curtain on the technology behind Autonomous Delivery Bots. You can view the recording above for a deep dive, but we've listed a brief description of the mentioned technologies below.

  • Simultaneous Localization And Mapping (SLAM) - The ability to map and navigate a physical environment, as it's entering it, without seeing it before.
  • Lidar - The bot uses a laser to illuminate an environment and detect the distance of objects based on the refection of the the laser on the objects.
  • Edge AI - The information is collected by the bot and intelligently analyzed locally on the hardware.
  • 5G - Ability to remove processing from the bot and to the cloud.
  • Computer Vision - Intelligent cameras can communicate with the bot to help it navigate the environment.


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Topics: Machine Learning, Artificial Intelligence, Digital Transformation, AI, Video Blog

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