RAPIRO wants to spread joy of robots with Raspberry Pi

Jun 25, 2013 by Nancy Owano report

(Phys.org) —The Raspberry Pi is a computing milestone as a very low-priced computing device running Linux; now a Japanese inventor wants to rev up another kind of breakthrough, with an affordable robot kit that can work with the Raspberry Pi and its camera module. Say hello to RAPIRO, as its makers say, "the robot you always wanted as a kid," and, as its makers ask, pledge some money for it too, because it is a Kickstarter campaign.

The makers want to raise funds to get it off and running in full production mode. RAPIRO is billed as an affordable and easy to assemble humanoid robot kit. This comes with 12 servo motors and an Arduino-compatible servo control board. RAPIRO was designed to mount with the Raspberry Pi and camera module in the head. Taking its selling points one by one, the question is, how affordable? The makers claim the kit is 1/10th the price of current Linux-powered humanoid robot kits.

Next, the RAPIRO robot is billed as cute. How cute? Its 12 servo motors are for the neck, waist, feet, and arms. RAPIRO can grip a pen, and can turn its head and waist. Then there are RAPIRO's LED eyes, lit brightly by RGB LEDs. Next, the claim is that it is easy to put together. How easy? Assembling RAPIRO just takes a . No soldering is involved.

The developer behind RAPIRO is Shota Ishiwatari of Kiluck Corp. in collaboration with three other small companies in Japan. Ishiwatari designed RAPIRO with 3-D CAD, built , and wrote the code. Now he and colleagues are in promotion mode. They want to start a revolution, in the spirit of Raspberry Pi, where the robots can not only be enjoyed as cute but also eventually customizable and programmable.

"If we are successful in our Kickstarter, we will publish 3-D data (.stl) on our website, allowing you to customize the RAPIRO with a ," according to the campaign page.

Kits available on Kickstarter do not come with a Raspberry Pi and camera module.

This video is not supported by your browser at this time.
RAPIRO: Mounting of a Raspberry Pi camera module

As for progress, the campaign has taken in more donations than its original £20,000 goal. The initial offer of a full kit at £199 was already snapped up. The offer was for a full kit with estimated delivery date of December; prices after that start at £229, up to £5,000 for a custom-designed RAPIRO, where the shape would be 3-D printed especially for the pledger. At the time of this writing, the campaign has taken in £31,002 with 178 backers.

Explore further: Robots recognize humans in disaster environments

More information: www.rapiro.com/

Related Stories

Charlotte robot tells the world where it's not going

Jun 03, 2013

(Phys.org) —A resourceful thinker who likes to learn as he goes, Kevin Ochs started out on a project with the intention of brushing up skills in C++ programming. He has come up with something quite interesting ...

Raspberry Pi to add camera later this year

May 22, 2012

(Phys.org) -- The Raspberry Pi, a uniquely priced, no casing computer that plugs into your TV and a keyboard., will be given a camera accessory later this year. That may be “oh-so-what” news if this ...

Linkbot learners can build robots on all levels

May 29, 2013

(Phys.org) —A Kickstarter project offers an interesting value proposition. A Linkbot robot platform helps robot hopefuls learn as they go. This is a modular platform where robot learners can keep it simple ...

Atomic time for the Raspberry Pi

Jun 26, 2012

A blog post on DesignSpark - an online community for electronic engineers - has described how the Raspberry Pi mini computer can be synchronised with NPL's atomic time scale via the MSF Radio Time Signal.

Recommended for you

Nokia turnaround since handset unit sale continues

28 minutes ago

Nokia appears to have turned around its fortunes after the sale of its ailing cellphone unit to Microsoft, reporting a third-quarter net profit of 747 million euros ($950 million), from a loss of 91 million euros a year earlier. ...

Yahoo CEO defends strategy in face of criticism

29 minutes ago

Signaling her reign has reached a pivotal juncture, Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer is trying to convince restless shareholders that the long-struggling Internet company is heading in the right direction.

Sk Hynix logs all-time high Q3 earnings

44 minutes ago

SK Hynix, the world's second-largest memory chip maker, reported Thursday a record high quarterly net profit for the three months to September on strong sales and currency earnings.

Apple computer sells for record $905K in NY

53 minutes ago

One of the first Apple computers ever built has sold in New York for $905,000, leading Bonhams auction house to declare it the world's most expensive computer relic.

User comments : 0