I've googled a lot but wasn't able to find official definitions of these 3 parts. Maybe the explanations of servo and controller are good enough, but I'm still trying to look for a more "official" one.

Any ideas?


closed as unclear what you're asking by Chuck Jun 30 '16 at 14:35

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    $\begingroup$ I don't agree that those are the three key conponents of a robot. Maybe I'd agree if you were talking about the drive for a single robot axis of motion. $\endgroup$ – SteveO Jun 30 '16 at 11:21
  • $\begingroup$ Welcome to Robotics snakeninny, but I'm afraid that it is not clear what you are asking. We prefer practical, answerable questions based on actual problems that you face, so it's a good idea to include details of what you want to achieve, what you tried, what you saw & what you expected to see. Please take a look at How to Ask & tour for more information on how stack exchange works and work through the Robotics question checklist to edit your question to make it clearer. $\endgroup$ – Chuck Jun 30 '16 at 14:35
  • $\begingroup$ As @SteveO states, your question is built around the assumption that the three key components of a robot are a controller, servo, and reducer. I would be more inclined to agree with NBCKLY below (sense, think, act) - where are you getting your definition of a robot from? What are you calling a "reducer"? $\endgroup$ – Chuck Jun 30 '16 at 14:36
  • $\begingroup$ As a 1 month robotics noob, I think I may have some misunderstandings. @NBCKLY 's answer is pretty much what I was expecting, and I'll take a look at the books he mentioned. Thanks! $\endgroup$ – snakeninny Jul 4 '16 at 2:36

Your question is premised on a misunderstanding of what a robot is composed of, but you are close.

A robot is an agent that is capable of sensing, thinking, and acting. The sense-think-act (or sense-plan-act) paradigm has historical significance in behaviour based robotics, and you can read about it in Ronald Arkin's book Behavior-Based Robotics.

The two of the three components that you mention in your question fall neatly into the categories of sensing, thinking, and acting. Sensing components, as the name suggests, gather data from sensors about the environment (internal or external). Common sensors include accelerometers, gyroscopes, cameras, radar, lidar, etc.. Thinking is implemented in a computing environment, small robots will use a micro-controller to facilitate this. On the computer, algorithms, controllers (the control theory type), artificial intelligence (and so on) process the sensor data as input and determine a desired output objective. Acting components, which include servo motors as you mentioned, are responsible for interacting with, or actuating in, the environment.

With this brief description, hopefully you better understand what a robot is at an abstract level, which should inform you as to what the physical components are for at a high-level. I will again point you to Arkin's book. The Springer Handbook of Robotics is another good resource that will certainly answer your questions.


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