CITRIS PI’s startup launches AI for robots

Overhead view of white robotic arms sorting red tomatoes and small green cylinders.

Covariant, a robotics company started by CITRIS researcher Pieter Abbeel, has announced the launch of Robotics Foundation Model 1 (RFM-1), which it states will transition artificial intelligence (AI) from the digital world of chatbots and image generators to the physical world, starting with warehouse robots.

The foundation of AI rests on human-like learning based on experience, which is what will set these new robots apart from previous commercial models. Instead of programming that repeats one task Ad Infinitum, Covariant’s software will allow these machines to gain a broad awareness of their surroundings and troubleshoot what to do in unfamiliar scenarios by training on diverse data from cameras and sensors in addition to vast amounts of text.

RFM-1 will first be deployed with warehouse robots that need to pick up, move and sort items through distribution centers.

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