GeckoSystems Intl. Corp. has completed the prototyping and development of their mobile robot person following software and hardware system, GeckoTrak™ 2.0, using advanced sensor fusion technologies.
ATLANTA, GA, Aug. 6, 2008 - - GeckoSystems Intl. Corp. (PINKSHEETS: GCKO) announced today that they have completed the prototyping and development of their mobile robot person following software and hardware system, GeckoTrak™ 2.0, using advanced sensor fusion technologies. GeckoSystems is a dynamic leader in the emerging Mobile Service Robot (MSR) industry revolutionizing their development and usage with mobile robot solutions for safety, security, and service™.
"We have worked for some years to develop the ability for our CareBot™ MSR's to automatically follow, or find, a person designated for our fully autonomous mobile robots to be in constant and close proximity. This third leg of our three legged milk stool of GeckoNav™, GeckoChat™, and now GeckoTrak completes the fundamental functional benefits needed to cost effectively provide utility to families for remote care taking of their members and other loved ones. This will benefit all our stakeholders and improve ROI for our investors," concluded Mr. R. Martin Spencer, President/CEO.
GeckoTrak has the ability, in conjunction with GeckoNav to automatically follow Grandma (or other designated person) around in their daily routine about their home. In addition to allowing routine web cam video surveillance of the care receiver, GeckoTrak enables their CareBots to timely (using GeckoScheduler™) remind Grandma, or other care receivers, to take medications, of favorite TV shows coming on and other timely, routine reminders by always being close by and within easy hearing distance of GeckoChat™.
GeckoSystems uses advanced sensor fusion to merge machine vision, passive IR, and sonar to identify and/or locate the person of interest in GeckoTrak. Sensor fusion is a scientifically homogenized situational awareness system resulting from the implicit synergies in aggregated, subsumptive detection and range finding systems. These deliberately blended detection systems enable heightened, if not extraordinary, environmental perception sufficient to indicate common sense responses.
GeckoTrak software merges and interprets data from three different, layered sensor systems to automatically follow a designated person anywhere in their home. A scanning passive infrared (PIR) sensor detects a person's body heat and reports its orientation to GeckoTrak for further processing. Highly optimized machine vision algorithms are employed to learn, remember, and identify the care receiver's daily attire. A sonar range finder is instrumental in maintaining a safe, predetermined distance between the CareBot and the care receiver. GeckoNav provides the artificial intelligence to automatically guide the CareBot to remain proximate while avoiding obstacles automatically to where GeckoTrak determines the care receiver to be. The software portions of GeckoTrak run on two separate, low power 40Mhz and 1 Ghz onboard computers in their advanced biological hierarchical system architecture.
This brings a new level of situational awareness to their mobile robots with actionable intelligence. Situational awareness is the environmental understanding resulting from blended sensor systems and the common sense implications of those combined perceptions.
About GeckoSystems International Corporation:
In the ten years since founding, the Company has developed a suite of proprietary, fundamental technologies that enable their robots to automatically self -navigate the home or workplace using advanced sense and avoid technologies for reliable, unattended collision avoidance while patrolling, following and/or errand running. These scientifically developed, tested, and proven hardware and software breakthroughs enable the practical, low cost manufacture, sale and usage of mobile service robots in a variety of environments.
Their mobile robot solutions are appropriate for the consumer, professional healthcare, commercial security, public safety, and defense markets. The consumer has needs for family care assistance with remote monitoring and notification. Professional healthcare needs nighttime errand running, portable telemedicine, etc. Homeland Security needs mobile robots patrolling public and/or private venues with WMD and small arms weapon detect. Many commercial and military users desire the elimination of the "man in the loop" to enable unmanned ground and air vehicles such as driverless automobiles (or "cybercars"), trucks, and drone aircraft - -presently teleoperated - - to not require any human intervention.
The Company's mobile robot solutions are appropriate for the consumer, professional healthcare, commercial security and defense markets.
The consumer has needs for family care assistance with remote monitoring and notification. This is for family care for the elderly, chronically ill, and children. Since GeckoTrak™ enables the CareBot to automatically follow a designated care receiver using sensor fusion; it allows the caregiver to remotely see how they are doing using the onboard wireless webcam. Should the designated family member not respond to their CareBot's inquiries, GeckoChat™ would contact the caregivers forthwith by telephone.
Professional healthcare needs cost effective night time errand running, portable telemedicine, etc., enabling specialist nurses to be more efficient and productive with less work by allowing them to video conference (telepresence) doctors for more timely, "on the spot," diagnosis of patients. The CareBotPro™ can carry all the specialized supplies and equipment the IV or wound care nursing specialists might need. At night the MSR can deliver bedpans, medications, even take vital signs, etc. to those in need while the night shift nurses are busy with a crisis, or other important duties on their wing or floor.
Homeland Security needs mobile robots patrolling public venues with WMD and small arms weapon detect. This deployment would dramatically improve public safety in our post 9/11 world at lower cost and greater efficiencies than human guards only. For example, human guards would tire quickly hauling multiple WMD detection systems. GeckoSystems' SecurityBot™ MSR's would not.
Commercial and military users desire the elimination of the "man in the loop" to enable unmanned ground and air vehicles such as driverless automobiles, trucks, and drone aircraft to not require routine, constant or not infrequent, human control. GeckoSystems' advanced family of hardware and AI software technologies can enable MSR's that can explore urban dwellings with high levels of situational awareness due to multiple layers of sensor fusion, while looking for human inhabitants - -automatically - - without any human invention or control. This can save lives by placing our troops back one or more steps from an unforeseen ambush.
Intelligent mobile service robots are over 80% software. What truly differentiates GeckoSystems from the rest of the world is their incredibly fast, automatic self -navigation software, GeckoNav. Without going into the details of real -time mapping, cognizant navigation, planned path patrol, sensor fusion, short -term memory, situational awareness, and other "buzz words," GeckoNav makes possible automatic patrolling and navigation in peopled or dynamic environments, "out of the box" automatic learning of surroundings, and safe control of the MSR. GeckoNav is the primary artificial intelligence (AI) engine of all their mobile robot products. Regarding maintenance and technical support, GeckoZap™, the diagnostic and compliance software tool provides critical calibration and diagnostic capabilities to service personnel in a single package, further reducing maintenance and support costs.
GeckoChat provides real -time voice synthesis and recognition coupled with scheduling, natural language processing and expert systems to achieve a complete verbal interaction package. Developed for use in the home environment, especially in the context of elder care, the benefits of GeckoChat include programming by the family, verbal reminders of past, present, and future events, surrogate short -term memory, verbal control of the robot, and verbal confirmation of critical events such as medicine or other medical regimes. However, GeckoChat can be easily extended to handle nearly any verbal task for mobile robot control.
GeckoTrak is their real -time color machine vision system with object tracking, motion vector detection using sensor fusion with sonar range finding, and body heat infrared detection. All this enables an equipped MSR to, for example, recognize and follow individuals in the home or detect and pursue intruders in a public safety or commercial security setting, automatically, without human intervention.
For a non technical discussion of what a GeckoSystems' CareBot does, the short answer is that it decreases the difficulty and stress for the caregiver that needs to watch over grandma, mom, or other family members most, if not much, of the time day in and day out due to concerns about their well being, safety, and security.
But, first let's look at some other labor saving, automatic home appliances most of us use routinely. For example, needing to do two or more necessary chores and/or activities at the same time, like laundering clothes and preparing supper.
The automatic washing machine needs no human intervention after the dirty clothes are placed in the washer, the laundry powder poured in, and the desired wash cycle set. Then, this labor saving appliance runs automatically until the washed clothes are ready to be placed in another labor saving home appliance, the automatic clothes dryer. While the clothes are being washed and/or dried, the caregiver prepares supper using several time saving home appliances like the microwave oven, "crock" pot, blender, and conventional stove, with possible convection oven capabilities.
After supper, the dirty pots, pans, and dishes are placed in the automatic dishwasher to be washed and dried while the family retires to the den to watch TV, and/or the kids to do homework. Later, perhaps after the kids have gone to bed, the caregiver may then have the time to fold, sort, and put up the now freshly laundered clothes.
Much like these useful and cost effective appliances, a CareBot helps the caregiver as a new type of labor saving, time management automatic home appliance.
For example, the caregiver frequently feels time stress when they need to go shopping for 2 or 3 hours, and are uncomfortable when they have to be away for more than an hour or so. Time stress is much worse for the caregiver with a frail elderly parent who must be reminded to take medications at certain times of the day. How can the caregiver be away for 3 -4 hours when Grandma must take her prescribed medication every 2 or 3 hours? If the caregiver is trapped in traffic for an hour or two beyond the 2 or 3 they expected to be gone, this "time stress" can be very difficult for the caregiver to moderate.
Not infrequently, the primary caregiver has a 24 hour, 7 days a week responsibility. After weeks and weeks of this sometimes tedious, if not onerous routine, how does the caregiver get a "day off?" To bring in an outsider is expensive (easily $75 -125 per day for just 8 hours) and there is the concern that medication will be missed or the care receiver have an accident requiring immediate assistance by the caregiver, or someone they must designate. And the care receiver may be very resistant to a "stranger" coming in to her home and "running things."
So what is it worth for a care receiver to have an automatic system to help take care of Grandma? Just 3 or 4 days a month "off" on a daylong shopping trip, a visit with friends, or just take in a movie would cost $225 -500 per month. And that scenario assumes that Grandma is willing to be taken care of by a "stranger" during those needed and appropriate days off.
So perhaps an automatic caregiver, a CareBot, might be pretty handy, and potentially very cost effective from the primary caregiver's perspective.
The care receiver's perception of a CareBot is much different from the caregiver's. It's a new kind of companion that always stays close to them enabling family and friends to care for them from afar. It tells them jokes, retells family anecdotes, reminds them to take medication, reminds them that family is coming over soon (or not at all), recites Bible verses, plays favorite songs and/or other music. It alerts them when unexpected visitors, or intruders are present. It notifies designated caregivers when a potentially harmful event has occurred, such as a fall, fire in the home, or just not found by the CareBot for too long a time. And it responds to calls for help and notifies those that the caregiver determined should be immediately notified when any anticipated event occurs.
The family can customize the personality of the CareBot. The voice's cadence can be fast or slow. The intonation can be breathy, or abrupt. The voice's volume can range from very loud to very soft. The response phrases from the CareBot for recognized words and phrases can be colloquial and/or unique to the family's own heritage. The personality can range from brassy to timid depending on how the caregiver, and others appropriate, chooses it to be.
Generally, the care receiver is pleased at the prospect of family being able to drop in for a "virtual visit" using the onboard webcam and video monitor for at home "video conferencing." The care receiver may feel much more needed and appreciated when their far flung family and friends can "look in" on them any where in the world where they can get broadband internet access and simply chat for a bit.
Why is Grandma really interested in a CareBot? She wants to stay in her home, or her family's home, as long as she possibly can. What's that worth? Priceless. Or, an average nursing home is $4,500 per month for an environment that is too often the beginning of a spiral downward in the care receiver's health. That's probably $2 -3K more per month for them to be placed where they really don't want to be. Financial payback on a CareBot? Less than a year - Emotional payback for the family to have this new automatic caregiver? Nearly instantaneous.
GeckoSystems' vision is to create practical mobile robot solutions for personal, business, and government use. We are committed to deliver service robots of high quality that safe, cost effective, and gratifying for all stakeholders.
Statements regarding financial matters in this press release other than historical facts are "forward -looking statements" within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, and as that term is defined in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Except for historical information contained herein, the statements in this news release are forward -looking statements that are made pursuant to the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. The Company intends that such statements about the Company's future expectations, including future revenues and earnings, technology efficacy and all other forward -looking statements be subject to the Safe Harbors created thereby. Forward -looking statements involve known and unknown risks and uncertainties, which may cause a company's actual results, performance and achievement in the future to differ materially from forecasted results, performance, and achievement. The Company is a development stage firm that continues to be dependent upon outside capital to sustain its existence. Since these statements (future operational results and sales) involve risks and uncertainties and are subject to change at any time, the Company's actual results may differ materially from expected results. The Company undertakes no obligation to publicly release the result of any revisions to these forward -looking statements that may be made to reflect events or circumstances after the date hereof, or to reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events or changes in the Company's plans or expectations.
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Source: GeckoSystems Intl. Corp.