MIT scientists have built a novel robot that learns how to play a game of Jenga. In the game, 54 rectangular blocks are ricked in 18 stories of three blocks each, with the blocks in each storey oriented perpendicular to the blocks below.
The goal here is to extract a block and place it at the top of the tower without tumbling the structure. This robot developed by MIT scientists features an external camera and cuff in addition to things it uses in order to see and feel the tower and its blocks.
"Unlike in more purely cognitive tasks or games such as chess or Go, playing the game of Jenga also requires mastery of physical skills such as probing, pushing, pulling, placing, and aligning pieces," said Alberto Rodriguez, an assistant professor at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in the US.
As robot pushes against a block, computer receives visual and tactile feedback from camera and cuff. It then goes to compare these measurements to moves the robot made earlier in order to be able to extract a block and build a new level.
"This is very difficult to simulate, so the robot has to learn in the real world, by interacting with the real Jenga tower. The key challenge is to learn from a relatively small number of experiments by exploiting common sense about objects and physics," Rodriguez added
Watch the video:
However, humans don't seem to be excited by watching this robot learn and play Jenga. On Twitter, some called it cheating while others were concerned about robots replacing humans tasks and activities. Here's how Twitterati reacted:
(With agency inputs)