Mashing web-based virtual microscopy and a massive multi-touch display surface, Finnish researchers have created a new interface for laboratory science that allows researchers to pan and zoom around a microscope sample via a tabletop or wall-mounted touchscreen, zooming in so close that sub-cellular details can be seen.
Exoskeletons aren't all just made for soldiers — now they can help desk jockeys reach for a pen or a cup of coffee, and reduce the fatigue that comes with typing all day long.
The x-Ar arm support won't give you superhuman strength or do your work for you — it will just help your arm feel a little less like dead weight.
Most telepresence robots are geared toward providing the user with a remote presence in the workplace or home. TEROOS, a shoulder-mounted telepresence robot developed by researchers at Keio University and elsewhere in Japan, is making telepresence more of a social experience.
White-hat hackers (that's the good, helpful kind) Michael Gough and Ian Robertson have created an Android app that's capable of breaking into the very popular cardkey-type door locks with a single click. It's not foolproof, since it requires some information about each cardkey system that not everyone will have, but it's still pretty amazing/uncomfortable.
The app (which is not in the Android Market, so don't even bother looking for it) is called Caribou, and relies on a vulnerability in these sorts of security systems that allows them to be unlocked remotely. It's actually a surprisingly lo-fi sort of app: You have to input the IP address of the system you're trying to hack, and then the app will perform a brute force attack (basically trying every single possible combination) until it lands on the correct one. Then the app will unlock the door for 30 seconds while you scoot inside the not-so-secure door.
Replacing some of the nuts and bolts in robots’ bodies with stretchy artificial muscles would allow them to be more flexible and lifelike than ever. Researchers at the Auckland Bioengineering Institute in New Zealand have succeeded in using such soft muscles in a motor that creates continuous rotational force. The motor uses only a few parts beside the muscle and needs no gears, cogs or bearings.
When a satellite runs out of fuel, there are really only a couple options: Quietly become a piece of space junk, or fall back to Earth in a blaze of glory. But a new space gas station will fill ‘em up, ensuring satellites can keep on trucking and preventing the proliferation of orbiting garbage.
NASA’s Astronomy Picture of the Day usually serves up a stunning daily image of the cosmos, but today’s image is particularly spectacular because it’s not a single image at all, but rather a stream of Cassini images stitched into a sweeping video of a journey through Saturn’s neighborhood. The resulting video creates a Cassini’s-eye-view sensation, mimicking what it might feel like to fly a spacecraft around Saturn and its satellites.
If you thought Watson’s “Jeopardy” victory over mankind was painful, check this out. A manufacturing robot wipes the floor with us humans in the popular iPhone game “1to50.”
The Adept Quattro robot takes just 6.6 seconds to complete the game, which requires that you press the numbers 1 through 50 in succession. This is harder than you think, like playing a less complicated, faster version of Sudoku. Quattro now tops the leaderboards, obviously.
A new robot can tell when it's being ignored, and it politely and subtly gets a person's attention. Researchers say the new computer vision system could help robots and humans interact more effectively, by allowing robots to use the same social cues as people.
Cracking combination locks has never been so easy. A group of engineering students at Olin College of Engineering have built a robot that will solve any MasterLock combination in a under two hours by running through all the possible combinations. Just set it and forget it.