With the rapid development of robot technology, it is difficult to find out the major milestones in the course of its development. But MIT’s robot Hermes is an important step in the history of robot development. Because its form is completely a robot, its actions and reactions are manipulated by people.
Hermes can feedback its balance and location information in real time, so that human operators can adjust their footsteps and body posture according to feedback information. This has solved one of the most important problems in the present humanoid robot – keeping the bipedal upright. In other words, no matter what terrain you walk or push from behind, Hermes can react like a person.
Another notable thing is Hermes’s hands. Although each hand has only three fingers, it can pick up electric tools, crush a pop can or even pour a cup of coffee. Using the joystick installed on the exoskeleton, the human operator can let the robot pick up things and maintain precise interaction with the surrounding environment, which is just not what the old robot can do.