Robot ‘chef’ learns, recreates recipes by watching human videos

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Anyone fancy a salad made by a robot?

Researchers at the University of Cambridge say they’ve trained a robotic “chef” to watch and learn from videos of people preparing meals, then recreate the dish itself.

PhD student Grzegorz Sochacki and his colleagues at the university’s robotics laboratory devised simple salad recipes, then filmed themselves preparing them.

Using computer vision, the robot analysed each frame of video, and was able to identify different objects and features, such as the knife, the ingredients, plus the human chef’s arms, hands and face.

By correctly identifying the ingredients and movements of the human chef, the robot determined which recipe was being prepared.

The researchers say the study, published on Sunday, June 4 in the journal IEEE Access, suggests videos can be a useful source for automating food production.