And then there were eleven. Yesterday, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) announced that it had narrowed the field for its Urban Grand Challenge to just under a dozen robotic vehicles. 35 teams were part of this week's qualifying rounds.
The finalists, which include a truck, a Prius and a sedan, will be competing this weekend for $3.5 million in prize money. To finish, each robot has to complete a 60 mile course in under six hours. And there's going to be live traffic—roughly 50 human-driven vehicles will be on the road. The robots will even have to deal with four-way-stops. Which would be amazing, since that's something most humans can't even figure out. Tomorrow, watch the race live here.—Gregory Mone
Five amazing, clean technologies that will set us free, in this month's energy-focused issue. Also: how to build a better bomb detector, the robotic toys that are raising your children, a human catapult, the world's smallest arcade, and much more.