Beyond Audio and Video: Using Claytronics to Enable Pario

  • Seth Copen Goldstein Carnegie Mellon University
  • Todd C. Mowry Carnegie Mellon University
  • Jason D. Campbell Intel Research Pittsburgh
  • Michael P Ashley-Rollman Carnegie Mellon University
  • Michael De Rosa Carnegie Mellon University
  • Stanislav Funiak Carnegie Mellon University
  • James F. Hoburg Carnegie Mellon University
  • Mustafa E. Karagozler Carnegie Mellon University
  • Brian Kirby Carnegie Mellon University
  • Peter Lee Carnegie Mellon University
  • Padmanabhan Pillai Carnegie Mellon University
  • J. Robert Reid Hanscom Air Force Base
  • Daniel D. Stancil Carnegie Mellon University
  • Michael P. Weller Carnegie Mellon University
Keywords: Claytronics, Pario

Abstract

In this article, we describe the hardware and software challenges involved in realizing Claytronics, a form of programmable matter made out of very large numbers-potentially millions-of submillimeter sized spherical robots. The goal of the claytronics project is to create ensembles of cooperating submillimeter  robots, which work together to form dynamic 3D physical objects. For example, claytronics might be used in telepresense to mimic, with high-fidelity and in 3-dimensional solid form, the look, feel, and motion of the person at the other end of the telephone call. To achieve this long-range vision we are investigating hardware mechanisms for constructing submillimeter robots, which can be manufactured en masse using photolithography. We also propose the creation of a new media type, which we call pario. The idea behind pario is to render arbitrary moving, physical 3-dimensional objects that you can see, touch, and even hold in your hands. In parallel with our hardware effort, we are developing novel distributed programming languages and algorithms to control the ensembles, LDP and Meld. Pario may fundamentally change how we communicate with others and interact with the world around us. Our research results to date suggest that there is a viable path to implementing both the hardware and software necessary for claytronics, which is a form of programmable matter that can be used to implement pario. While we have made significant progress, there is still much research ahead in order to turn this vision into reality.

Author Biographies

Seth Copen Goldstein, Carnegie Mellon University

Professor

Computer Science Department

Todd C. Mowry, Carnegie Mellon University

Professor

Computer Science Department

Jason D. Campbell, Intel Research Pittsburgh
Research Scientist
Michael P Ashley-Rollman, Carnegie Mellon University
Graduate Student
Michael De Rosa, Carnegie Mellon University
Ph.D. Candidate
Stanislav Funiak, Carnegie Mellon University

Graduate Student

Robotics Institute

James F. Hoburg, Carnegie Mellon University

Professor

Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering

Mustafa E. Karagozler, Carnegie Mellon University

Ph.D. Candidate

Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering

Brian Kirby, Carnegie Mellon University
Research Associate
Peter Lee, Carnegie Mellon University

Professor and Head

Department of Computer Science

Padmanabhan Pillai, Carnegie Mellon University
Research Scientist
J. Robert Reid, Hanscom Air Force Base
Research Scientist
Daniel D. Stancil, Carnegie Mellon University

Professor

Electrical and Computer Engineering Department

Published
2009-06-28
Section
Articles