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              一个能自动帮你垃圾分类的机器人

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              2020年02月28日

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              At an office in San Francisco, if you drop a coffee cup in a robotic waste bin, the machine will automatically sort the cup for recycling.

              在旧金山的一间办公室里,如果你把咖啡杯扔进机器人垃圾箱里,它就会自动把杯子分到可回收垃圾里。

              The office is one of the first to use the technology, called TrashBot, from a startup called CleanRobotics that is trying to solve a fundamental challenge in recycling: Even when someone is diligently trying to reduce waste, there’s a good chance they’re recycling wrong.

              这间办公室是第一批使用TrashBot(智能垃圾分类机器人)技术的,它是初创公司CleanRobotics的产品,旨在解决回收中最基本的问题:即使一个人想尽量减少浪费,但他们也很有可能回收错。

              一个能自动帮你垃圾分类的机器人

              “The idea was really born out of frustration,” says Charles Yhap, cofounder and CEO of CleanRobotics, which is a semifinalist in the current IBM Watson AI XPRIZE.

              CleanRobotics公司进入了本届IBM沃森人工智能XPRIZE竞赛的半决赛,联合创始人兼首席执行官Charles Yhap说:“这个想法真的是无奈之举。”

              He points to the example of a store like Whole Foods, where anyone who eats at the salad bar then has to figure out which bin to use for their fork and box and cup.

              他以Whole Foods(一家美国超市)这样的商家为例,在那里的沙拉吧就餐的人需要弄清楚他们的叉子、盒子和杯子要扔进哪个垃圾箱。

              “I’ll eat my food and I go to throw something away and I’m confronted with an array of waste bins, and it’s just so confusing—everywhere you go, the rules are slightly different, and I’m still not sure that I’m doing it correctly.”

              “我吃完东西去扔垃圾时,面前有一排垃圾箱,我就懵了。你去的所有地方分类规则都会有差异,我都不确定我扔得对不对。”

              He thought that technology could help. “We started looking at the diminishing costs of sensors and robotic components and the increasing accessibility of algorithms and AI systems and we thought, maybe we can build something that does this better than people,” he says.

              他认为这项技术会有所帮助。他说:“我们先是发现传感器和机器人部件成本下降,算法和人工智能系统的可达性提高,所以我们认为可以做出在垃圾分类方面比人类做得好的产品。”

              It helped that current bins are already expensive—a single set in an airport might cost $1,200. “These are just shiny metal tubes that don’t do anything for you. So we thought we could build a robot that is price competitive and adds a ton more value.”

              对我们有利的是现在垃圾桶都很贵,飞机场的一套垃圾桶就要1,200美元。“那些只是有光泽的金属桶,什么都做不了。所以我们想我们能做出一个机器人,价位合适,而且用处很大。”


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