Nao humanoid climbs spiral staircase, breakfast in bed is around the corner (video)

Robots can clean your pool and pick up after your lavish dinner parties, but what use is Mr. Nao when you're ringing for a nightcap from the comfort of your second-floor bedroom? Okay, so we've seen the odd bot take a journey up some stairs, but how many cyborgs are prepared to scale flights that twist and turn? Researchers from the University of Freiburg's Humanoid Robots Laboratory have demonstrated a Nao humanoid capable of climbing spiral staircases, which, of course, are more challenging to scale than their non-curving counterparts. A laser range scanner on the top of the robot's head provides a global estimation of the bot's position, and the humanoid uses a 3D model of the staircase to match up with the images it captures on each step. This system lets it get a good enough grip on its geography to successfully detect stair edges and make it to the top with nary a trip. Take a look for yourself in the video below.