In the weeks in which our country experienced an emergency condition never encountered before, I-RIM organized itself to ensure that robots and intelligent machines could be of real help to the sick, health workers, and those who continue to produce in essential services, and to those who live in uncomfortable conditions in their own homes.
Ventilators that help SARS-Cov 2 patients are intelligent machines, as are some of the laboratories that perform tests on collected swabs. But the occasions when robots and intelligent machines could be useful are many more, and it is our duty to do everything possible to help them today, and are ready to avoid and limit similar future situations.
The difficulties for an intervention of the necessary size – hundreds of hospitals, hundreds of thousands of people involved – in the extremely tight times of the emergency, are obviously enormous. The unavailability of material supplies and the logistical difficulty of being able to use machines and robots in places where they could be useful in a short time are among the main causes of this difficulty.
Nonetheless, the I-RIM community believes that by bringing together all the forces that design and produce advanced technologies, artificial intelligence, and robotics in Italy, in Europe and in the world, useful contributions can be made.
The concrete actions that I’RIM, in coalition with other actors, are taking are three:
- Needs: collection of information on the requests and needs of health workers, of those who produce, of those who remain isolated at home, to live and work in greater safety, with better results, or even to live psychologically better such a dramatic moment
- Short-term answers: a collection of simple and well-documented projects, achievable with devices available with ease even now, and software made available free of charge by research centers, which can be assembled and used by non-specialized personnel to solve concrete problems in the local realities of our provinces
- Pilot Projects: examples of technological demonstrators, tested in the clinical field or in support of the response to Covid-19, which can develop into products with a high level of technological readiness and made available for general use in the medium term
At the conclusion of phase 1 of the Covid-19 emergency, the workshop Hhere come our…robots!” was held on 28 May, focusing on robotics at the service of the community, organized by Andrea Zanchettin, Federica Pascucci and Gianluca Antonelli, in collaboration with IEEE RAS – Italian Chapter. The video of the workshop is available here :
I-RIM activities in contrast to the effects of the pandemic continue in phase two of the progressive reopening of society and the resumption of economic and production activities, in which robotics and intelligent machines can play an even more incisive role than in the past.
Activities are supported by: