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RAPIRO: the humanoid robot kit for your Raspberry Pi

23 June 2013

RAPIRO is an affordable robot kit designed to work with a Raspberry Pi computer. It comes with an Arduino-compatible servo controller.

RAPIRO - the brainchild of Shota Ishiwatari, based in Tokyo, Japan - comes with a total of 12 servo motors, one for its neck, one in the waist, four for the two feet, and the final six for its two arms. Rapiro can walk with its feet, can grip a pen, and can turn its head and waist.

Ishiwatari says RAPIRO can be a catalyst between robotics and Paspberry Pi. "We want to start a revolution in cute, cool, affordable, customizable, and programmable robots," he said. "If we are successful in our kickstarter [project funding], we will publish 3D data (.stl) on our website, allowing you to customise the RAPIRO with a 3D printer." 

The name "RAPIRO" comes from RAspberry PI RObot. The Raspberry Pi computer is mounted in the head of RAPIRO; additionally, a Raspberry Pi Camera Module can be mounted in RAPIRO.

Ishiwatari suggests a range of uses for his robot:

- If you connect a wifi dongle or a bluetooth dongle to RAPIRO, you could control it with a smartphone or a game controller.

- A wifi-enabled RAPIRO could give you notifications of Facebook and Twitter messages, manage your schedules with google calendar, or tell you today's weather and fortune as your secretary robot.

- If you embed a Raspberry Pi camera module, it could watch over your house as home security robot.

- If it heard your voice with USB microphone adapter, it could respond to your voice.

- If you embed an IR LED in RAPIRO, it could control a TV or a air conditioner.

RAPIRO is developed by Shota Ishiwatari (Kiluck Corporation) in collaboration with 3D printer specialist JMC Inc., the electronics webshop, Switchscience and plastics injection moulding company, Myoshi.

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