The dog plague is here.Call the manure hunting drone


Can drones provide evidence of this waste of resources and let local authorities know where the shit is being dumped?

Ferdinand Wolf, Creative Director of DJI Europe, said yes. “Flight time has witnessed tremendous advances in drone technology,” Wolff said. “From the original Phantom, it may fly for seven or eight minutes. Now our drone can easily fly for more than 30 minutes. If you want to detect dog poop or garbage, instead of frequently landing to charge the battery.” In addition, drones now usually have Multiple vision sensors to help autonomous navigation in parks or country roads without hitting trees, etc.

“We can now run image recognition on the drone itself,” Wolff said. So can drones be programmed to distinguish shit from rocks? “We have a database of drones, where it can find and compare images. It can distinguish between people, bicycles, cars, or ships. So, if you go further, it’s similar. This is a piece of paper, Or this is stone, or this is shit. If it can look up the database and say, okay, this is usually what shit looks like, then this is all the technology that can be used for this purpose.”

Speaking of general garbage recognition, Zack Jackowski, chief engineer of Spot Robots at Boston Dynamics, put it more simply: “The way machine learning works, if you can visually recognize it as a unique thing, you can train the robot to recognize it. It. If you can pick it easily, then the robot can also pick it easily.”

“Of course, there are many different forms of poop that look very different,” Wolfe said. “If it’s on the grass and it has sunk or rotted, the shape, size, and consistency may be very different-but it is certainly possible.” The real good news is that Wolfe said it hangs from the branch. Garbage is the easiest to identify. “Something like a bag hanging on a tree is easy to spot and mark because it is very similar in shape and color.”

This is the crux. Drones are ideal for marking and tracking dog poop deposits, but they are not ideal for actual cleaning. In 2017, a Dutch startup claimed to have created two Stool shovel “Dogdrones“But the idea never took off. Volunteers who are willing to help during the test phase may understand that they are unable to do anything. In addition, in any case, this pair of bucket drones is ground-based.

“Pick up the bag may I think it’s possible,” Wolff said. “Pick up the poop itself like a shovel. It’s difficult to implement. You need to increase the size and utilities of the drone, and then everything will become bigger and more troublesome. “

Rescue robot

Robots are often conceived to complete tasks involving the three Ds: “dirty, dangerous, and boring.” Cleaning up shit will definitely tick all these boxes. Therefore, in order to obtain reliable ground clearance, what we really need is a robot that can go wherever a dog can go. This may be one of Spot’s best use cases.In fact, the robot is already equipped with its Spot Arm for Clean up trash outdoors.

Boston Dynamics itself stated that people are interested in the use case of “Spot + Spot Arm” for cleaning public spaces and roadsides, and its operation is essentially similar to “Acquisition” behavior BD engineers have already demonstrated.


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