Robotics

$10 million XPrize contest looks to usher in the era of real-life robotic avatars

$10 million XPrize contest loo...
The timeline for the ANA Avatar XPrize has the registration deadline listed as October 31, 2018
The timeline for the ANA Avatar XPrize has the registration deadline listed as October 31, 2018
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The Xprize ANA Avatar competition aims to accelerate the development of real-life robotic avatars, which could one day be used to remotely carry out tasks like care-giving or disaster relief from miles away
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The Xprize ANA Avatar competition aims to accelerate the development of real-life robotic avatars, which could one day be used to remotely carry out tasks like care-giving or disaster relief from miles away
The timeline for the ANA Avatar XPrize has the registration deadline listed as October 31, 2018
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The timeline for the ANA Avatar XPrize has the registration deadline listed as October 31, 2018

XPrize contests are nothing if not examples of big picture thinking. Following multi-million dollar competitions to put private spacecraft on the moon, reimagine C02 and tackle illiteracy in the developing world, the organization has just announced a new initiative to accelerate the development of real-life robotic avatars, which could one day be used to carry out tasks like caregiving or disaster relief from miles away.

Introduced today, the ANA Avatar XPrize is offering US$10 million in prize money to usher in an era where telepresence robots can be used to transplant human skills to any place in the world, at any time.

To claim the $8 million grand prize, the winning team will need to demonstrate a multipurpose robotic avatar that an untrained operator can use to complete various tasks from at least 100 km (62 mi) away. That includes an ability to see, hear, touch and interact with its environment, so that it can effectively assist people regardless of location be it through care-giving, disaster relief, or specialized trade skills for maintenance or repair.

The Xprize ANA Avatar competition aims to accelerate the development of real-life robotic avatars, which could one day be used to remotely carry out tasks like care-giving or disaster relief from miles away
The Xprize ANA Avatar competition aims to accelerate the development of real-life robotic avatars, which could one day be used to remotely carry out tasks like care-giving or disaster relief from miles away

"Our ability to physically experience another geographic location, or to provide on-the-ground assistance where needed, is limited by cost and the simple availability of time," said XPrize Founder and Executive Chairman Peter Diamandis. "The ANA Avatar XPrize can enable creation of an audacious alternative that could bypass these limitations allowing us to more rapidly and efficiently distribute skill and hands-on expertise to distant geographic locations where they are needed, bridging the gap between distance, time and cultures."

The timeline for the ANA Avatar XPrize has the registration deadline listed as October 31, 2018, with competing teams needing to submit a complete competition plan by January 31, 2019. Two milestone competitions will be held in April of 2020 and 2021 with $1 million on offer at each and the $8 million grand prize will be handed out in October 2021. Though as the much-delayed Google Lunar XPrize demonstrates, it bears mentioning that things don't always go to plan.

You can check out the promo video for the ANA Avatar XPrize below.

Source: XPrize

$10M ANA Avatar XPRIZE

3 comments
Pottsc
Not enough money offered. Just a awareness plop.
Douglas Bennett Rogers
This could alleviate a very big problem. Housing is out of reach for employees where most of the jobs are, such as the LA basin.
ljaques
Pottsc, Aren't they offering $1M for milestones and $8M grand prize? What do you consider "real money" if millions aren't enough for you? Anyone getting into the competition will likely find either sugar daddies or venture capitalists willing to play. I love these "seeding" competitions. The tiny millions they offer get people interested, motivated, and working toward the lofty goals. As I see it, it's all WIN, a positive-sum game.