Design and build a robot which will be computationally powerful, easy to work on, large enough to operate in a real world house or office environment and interact with the same household features that humans do, and be (of course) relatively inexpensive.
The robot will come with a basic software complement which provides numerous functions and establish all the basic I/O and motor control interfaces. All the source code and access to compilers will be provided to make it possible for new builders to modify the code as they desire.
It should have the hardware and software capacities to carry a reasonable weight, operate for hours at a time, and perform memory and throughput intensive tasks such as vision, speech recognition and generation, and sophisticated artificial intelligence techniques.
The robot should be constructed using, as far as practical, commonly available hardware and software; preferably free or inexpensive. Standard PC equipment and software will be used for the "intelligence".
The design should be flexible enough to accommodate future changes easily including alternate drive systems (e.g. tracks), addition of an arm(s), addition of animated head, etc.
In particular, the robot should provide a good platform for research into AI, vision and navigation.
The robot design will be well documented on the web so that anyone else can duplicate our design or use our methods to design their own robot.