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Over the past few years, many research groups have attempted to build smart environments. Recently, several groups have been actively conducting research into the construction of smart home environment for service robots to be used as assistants. A home service robot must have are localization, navigation, object recognition, and object handling functionalities. These operations are usually performed by a service robot by itself and the robot can perform the given tasks in a limited environment. In addition, they have shown only limited capabilities in a natural environment. We initiated a smart home environment project, RoboMaidHome, for light-weight service robots to provide reliable services by interacting with the environment through wireless sensor networks. This environment consists of the following three main components: (i) smart objects and smart appliances with sensor network functionality; (ii) a home server that connects smart devices as well as maintains information for reliable services; and (iii) service robots that perform tasks in collaboration with the environment. In this paper, we explain the basic concepts and the architecture of our project and address some key issues related to the project. Finally, we discuss the future directions of our project.
Date of Conference: 26-29 Aug. 2007