Section: Dissemination



The WebRobotics initiative aims at developing collaborations with partner academic and industry teams to jointly prototype and experiment end user applications involving assistive robots and sensor devices (depending on the size and number of the embedded components, applications may be either classified as robotic or IoT ones). Each WebRobotics project is structured around partner medical institutions that provide key requirements to specifications and use the actual prototype throughout their daily activity. WebRobotics Applications all use Hop.js as their core framework, natively supporting web protocols for communication and distribution of tasks, and any web enabled device such as a smartphone or tablet to drive the robots and applications. In 2016, the initiative accounted to two full time engineers until the completion of the project, mid year.

The Top Three Benefits of WebRobotics:

  • WebRobotics focuses on key societal issues, developing real applications for demanding users.

  • Application developers and users feedback to Hop.js framework developers, helping identify and prioritize key requirements.

  • The WebRobotics application portfolio fosters the dissemination and transfer of the Hop.js technology to the Industry.

The WebRobotics initiative now encompasses several prototypes in use by medical foundations and hospitals.

  • RAPP. The WebRobotics project is part of the RAPP FP7 european project, to be completed in December 2016, where Hop.js technology is used by several academic and SME R&D teams to develop a distributed software platform and applications for assistive robotics. Two prototypes have been developed, the first one is a personal coach robot (a Nao humanoid robot embedding Hop.js distributed applications), and the second one is a smart rollator (a walking aid with additional hardware and software services for rehabilitation, training and activity monitoring. The rollator hardware and robotic components are provided by Inria Hephaistos). Both prototypes are being evaluated by partner medical institutions.

  • Hopcare. Indes collaborates with other research teams (Inria STARS, Nice University Cobtek Project) and local institutes and SMEs to foster the development distributed monitoring and supervision applications with the Hop.js technology. An expert engineer is dedicated to this project (grant from UCN@Sophia Labex, until April 2016).

    • ICP (Institut Claude Pompidou Hospital, in Nice) is now using the Alzheimer diagnosis tool developed using Hop.js. User Data generated from Inria/Stars sensors and image analysis software are collected by a Hop.js server and processed before being delivered to the Physician's web tablet, as an editable web report, or paper ready PDF reports.

    • The activity monitoring application enables real-time monitoring of various events generated by hardware/software monitoring tools (such as the video monitoring applications from Inria/Stars) as well as user defined events. Hop.js is the common framework for the whole application (communications with remote information servers, processing of input data, database management, user authentication and authorization, custom views for web clients). The application will soon be deployed at the Nice Valrose EHPAD (a specialized institution for elderly who need medical care), where Inria runs an experimentation lab.

    • A third application has been developed to enable the configuration and use of Inria/Stars video analysis tools through a web interface. The application is used by researchers to tune their data processing algorithms.

Hop.js for IoT

As more and more software developers come to IoT, teams are facing critical challenges due to the inherent complexity of multi-platform distributed development, leading to team building issues, long and costly development cycles to deliver products with the highest quality, usability, and security standards

The Hop.js software suite enables agile software teams to build flexible, robust and secure end-to-end IoT applications with a single language and a consistent set of API and built-in software components.

Building on the Hop.js technology and the successful WebRobotics experiments, a startup project has been launched in 2016 as a spin-off of the Indes team, with the support of Inria DGD-T, funding two engineers from July 2016.

The team has initiated partnerships with IoT hardware vendors, adapted Hop.js to highly constrained execution environments on microcontrollers, and participated to a number of public and business events to promote the solution and meet future customers. The startup company is expected to launch in 2017.