Retired Officer Builds Human-like Robot from Appliance

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MarkHaygoodandhisrobot

 

Retired after 22 years as a Baltimore City police officer Mark Haygood, always had a penchant for techno gadgets.

“I was the really shy-in-the-basement-building-robots guy,” said Haygood. Haygood said his robot—made up mostly of mostly household appliances, including a clock radio, fan, and DVD player–is one of few full-sized humanoids in America. According to Merriam-Webster’s Learner’s Dictionary, humanoids is a word used to describe something that is looks or acts “like a human.”

During a recent interview with the AFRO , Haygood, the veteran officer and self-trained roboticist, powered up his human-like machine, equipped with flashing blue-neon lights and 3D-printer-made fingers. His “baby” as he refers to it, has the ability to move its arms and hands, rotate its head and hips, and soon, thanks to a newly installed speech synthesizer, will soon be able to speak.

Searching for a place to enhance his work, Haygood joined Baltimore’s Hackerspace in August 2012. He describes the Hackerspace as a place where “a whole bunch of Macgyvers get together to build stuff,” he said, referring to the TV show about a super geek who solves crimes. He pays a $50 monthly fee to have 24-hour access to equipment and professional programmers, hackers, and builders.

Along with members of his Hackerspace, Haygood plans to attend the 14th annual Robot Fest on April 27 in Lithicum, Md. to promote HEX to children and other robot-friendly spectators.

“I want to help kids. I want to teach kids. I want kids to get a shot of adrenaline in the arm as far as advanced fields of robots are concerned.”

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