A bipedal robot developed at the University of Michigan can run with a human-like gait, the fastest-ever robot with knees. Feedback algorithms are helping Mabel, a headless robot with impressive gams, to keep its balance as it runs in a round pen.
It seems like a lot of trouble just to retrieve a book from a shelf, but this video of a distributed parallel system--a robot swarm--pulling some Tom-Cruise-before-the-Mission-Impossible-franchise-went-off-the-rails theatrics is pretty amazing--not only for the grappling hooks and blinking lights, but because "Swarmanoid" really is a true recon robot.
Easton LaChappelle, a high school sophomore from Colorado, built a wireless animatronic hand and entered it into his local science fair. He won first place with the device, which he controls with a glove worn on his hand. The animatronic hand mimics the gloved hand’s finger movements in real time to pick up objects. After the local fair, LaChappelle took his invention to the regional and then the state fair, where he won third place.
Singing robots are nothing new, but this one from the National Taiwan University of Science and Technology in Taipei is the first one that we know of that actually reads a musical score before performing it. Nevermind the fact that watching it do so is undeniably uncomfortable--the researchers behind this humanoid head say that someday a collection of them could form a theatrical robotic musical troupe.
By Victor Youk,18, MIT freshman, as told to Ryan BradleyPosted 08.15.2011 at 10:14 am 3 Comments
Usually high-school rocket clubs launch an egg and try to have it land safely. But our teacher suggested that we do something harder: enter a competition to build a Mars rover that could be deployed from a rocket. A few of us started working on it. The goal was to launch a robot 1,000 feet in the air, have it land safely on the ground, and then drive it about 30 feet. But the robot had to fit inside a rocket that was just four inches in diameter and 20 inches long—it looked like a stick.
[Updated 2:25 p.m.]Honda sent us an e-mail saying the Asahi Shimbun report is "speculative." "Although Honda hopes that ASIMO will someday be a helper to people, at this point the robot is solely a research and design project," a Honda spokeswoman said.
Willow Garage's PR2 has provided a unique, open source robotics platform to all kinds of labs and institutions that otherwise wouldn't have access to a complex robotics system--but not to that many. For all the absolutely cool things you can do with PR2, the $400,000 price tag is prohibitive--only about two dozen commercial and academic labs have their own PR2s. So, in an attempt to make their robot more accessible, Willow Garage is introducing the PR2 SE this week, a pared-down version of the same robot costing a mere $285,000.
By Ryan BradleyPosted 08.10.2011 at 10:02 am 6 Comments
Paola Antonelli's first relationship with a computer began the day her Macintosh Classic arrived. "I remember very clearly, when I put it on my desk and the little smiley computer came on I thought, my God, this is like a pet," Antonelli, a curator at New York's Museum of Modern Art, says.
Take a look at the exhibition.
For MoMA's newest exhibit, called "Talk to Me," Antonelli chose 194 works ranging from videogames to toy robots to a New York City Metrocard machine—the idea is simple and complex.
Small colonies of swimming magnetic particles can self-assemble into micro-machines that can manipulate other particles, scientists report.
The particles can be remotely controlled to grasp and move other objects, which could enable precise and delicate fabrication processes that were previously not possible with machines.
The latest perceived target for cyber criminals: the automobile. The DOT has a vision for a networked automotive future in which cars speak to each other and to roadway infrastructure via wireless communications. But opening up those channels of inter-car communication means also providing a way in--an avenue that hackers could exploit for ill.