The robots I've personally used are just vacuum cleaners and toys, but even so, these creations took their designers years and countless sums of money to build. But a new project aims to let anyone design and create a custom automaton from the comfort of home.
Printable Programmable Machines is a scheme to democratize robot manufacturing. You wouldn't need to be a CAD expert, a tinkerer or a programmer — you could just fiddle with a computer a little bit, maybe sketch something out, and automated software would design your concept and prepare it for creation.
Our favorite grippy robot fist, the balloon filled with coffee grounds, has graduated from grabbing to throwing. Its developers at Cornell University and the University of Chicago have taught it how to hurl objects, from mini basketballs to darts.