DESTIR, the telepresence robot, has arrived at RVC!

It’s a segway. it’s an iPad. No, it’s DESTIR the telepresence robot!

DESTIR arrived at Rock Valley College December 2014.

DESTIR is a telepresence robot that can be used to extend your presence and visit classrooms, meetings, and auditoriums. It is like an iPad on a Segway. The brains of the robot is an iPad app.

The term telepresence was coined in 1980 by Marvin Minsky, founder of MIT’s Artificial Intelligence Laboratory. Telepresence robotics is currently being used in over 3,000 educational facilities around the globe.


Recent Events DESTIR has attended:

  1. Spoke at Cocoaheads meeting 2/18
  2. Spoke at IEEE meeting at RVC 2/3
  3. Taught entire class session for PCT130 2/24
  4. Spoke at RVC Board meeting 2/24

Future Events DESTIR will be attending:

  1. ICTM Regional high School Math Contest on February 28th.  There will be approximately 600 high school students from 27 schools on campus that day
  2. Kevin Mitnik will use DESTIR to talk the PCT130 students. Date: TBD

Creators of DESTIR website:

DESTIR stands for:


Here is how DESTIR works.

  1. A user account is setup to access the iPad app remotely.
  2. The user signs into the DESTIR via an iPad/iPhone app or Chrome web browser
  3. Once connected, the user then sees and hears DESTIRS surroundings
  4. In addition, the user can control where DESTIR goes via the segway wheels
  5. Other features while connected:
    1. Take photos
    2. Record session
    3. Display websites on robot screen
    4. Share connection with others
    5. Display computer screen on robot screen
  6. The iPad connected to the robot must have a string WIFI connection

Uses of DESTIR:

  1. Guest Speaker – Guest speakers can remote in and take over DESTIR and move around classroom and talk to attendees
  2. Campus Tours – Potential students/parents can tour RVC campus and classrooms be setting up schedule
  3. Assist Disabled Students – DESTIR could be used to allow disabled students the ability to attend classes where they otherwise wouldn’t be able to do so.
  4. Interaction with Software Changes – RVC programming students are creating custom apps for DESTIR that will allow for more types of interaction. An example would be an app feature that would allow touch interaction like whiteboards, games, etc.
RVC Student walking with DESTIR on a recent classroom visit
RVC Student walking with DESTIR on a recent classroom visit


What can you do to help?

  1. Ideas: Email Professor Chuck Konkol with ideas of how DESTIR can be used in education or in the community.
  2. InviteDESTIR will come to talk to your group. DESTIR will discuss current uses of telepresence robotics in education, expanding the walls of the classroom, and how RVC is using telepresence robotics. Email Professor Chuck Konkol to schedule a session.

Thank you, Prof Konkol