A stuff.co.nz story tipped us off to some interesting research being done by Albert Yeap at the Centre for Artificial Intelligence Research at Auckland University of Technology. Yeap has created a robot, named Albot, that navigates much like people and other biological creatures. It uses symbolic reasoning rather than precise distances and coordinates. For example, as we walk around, we might notice an obstacle such as a wall but, "We don't care if the wall is 1 metre, 1.2 metres or 0.9 metres away from us. It's somewhere out there roughly at that distance." So Albot is able to navigate successfully using the same type of error-ridden data that animals use. To learn more about how Albot navigates, see the research paper, Using a Mobile Robot for Cognitive Mapping (PDF format).