Showing posts with label robotics. Show all posts
Showing posts with label robotics. Show all posts

Monday, June 22, 2009

Bot of the day

The question: Would you eat sushi fondled by a robot?

Pink Tentacle has more information here.

[Follow me on Twitter.]

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Tabletop barista

(Tip of the hat to Nerdcore.)

[Follow me on Twitter.]

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Some tinfoil might be required.

ViRob, a Cavities Crawler

At the upcoming ILSI-Biomed Israel 2009 conference (June 15-17 in Tel Aviv), researchers from the Medical Robotics Laboratory at the Israel Institute of Technology (Technion) will be showing off a microrobot called ViRob, that has only a 1millimeter diameter and can crawl through vessels and cavities, when controlled by an external magnetic field.

"Cavities." Uh-huh. We know what they're talking about.

[Follow me on Twitter.]

Friday, May 22, 2009

Concept bots

Top Ten Robots That You Never Knew You Wanted

(Thanks to @bruces.)

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Humans can get used to anything.

Plausible (and refreshingly pacifist) robots live alongside humans in this sharp, provocative clip by 1stAveMachine, creator of one of the coolest CGI fembots of all time.

For a showcase of additional work, click here.

(Thanks yet again to Grinding.)

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Rise of the tumblebots

Imagine hundreds of these things coming at you in a tide of clicking, whirring, undulating black plastic . . .

(Thanks, Grinding!)

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Lunar swarmbots

Italy Aims to Send Spider-Bot Swarm to Moon

The idea to compete for the Google Lunar X Prize crystallized around the vision of Alberto Rovetta, a professor of robot mechanics at Politecnico di Milano. Rovetta's designs for lunar robots resemble skittering spiders or crabs that could deploy as a swarm of mobile cameras and sensors on both legs and wheels.

Such unorthodox designs may help the team seize the Google Lunar X Prize, which requires teams to land a robot on the moon, move at least 1,640 feet (500 meters) and beam high definition views back to Earth.

(Via The Keyhoe Report.)

Sunday, May 10, 2009

"Breakfast has been taken over by the machines."

"There's a meat substitute and there's a cheese substitute. Ever think there one day might be a human substitute?"

(Hat tip: @georgedvorsky.)

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

"The Humans Are Dead"

Dawn of the chembots

Chemical 'caterpillar' points to electronics-free robots (with video)

Shingo Maeda and colleagues made the colour-changing, motile gel by combining polymers that change in size depending on their chemical environment. This is based on an oscillating chemical reaction called the Belousov–Zhabotinsky (BZ) reaction. The result is an autonomous material that moves without electronic stimulation.

I'm pretty sure Rudy Rucker anticipated something like this in his "Ware" novels.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

The art of Dominic Elvin

You can find more of Dominic Elvin's futuristic imagery here.

Sunday, April 26, 2009


This monstrous robot spider looks like one sweet ride.

Pink Tentacle brings you full coverage!

(And don't miss these dead aliens . . .)

Saturday, April 18, 2009


From the official Tweenbots site:

But of more interest to me was the fact that this ad-hoc crowdsourcing was driven primarily by human empathy for an anthropomorphized object. The journey the Tweenbots take each time they are released in the city becomes a story of people's willingness to engage with a creature that mirrors human characteristics of vulnerability, of being lost, and of having intention without the means of achieving its goal alone.

(Thanks again to Michael Garrett!)

Friday, April 10, 2009


Robot killers might be allowed to fire on their own

Arkin contends that a properly designed robot could behave with greater restraint than human soldiers in the heat of battle and cause fewer casualties.

"Robots can be built that do not exhibit fear, anger, frustration or revenge, and that ultimately behave in a more humane manner than even human beings in these harsh circumstances," he wrote.

(Via Sentient Developments.)

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

A face only a mother could love

CB2 baby robot developing social skills (Pink Tentacle)

Comprised of robotics engineers, brain specialists, psychologists and other experts, the research team has been teaching the android to think like a baby by having it evaluate facial expressions and classify them into basic categories, such as happiness and sadness.

What will those folks at Skynet come up with next?

Tuesday, March 31, 2009


Honda develops brain interface for robot control

The system was not demonstrated on Tuesday but Honda did release a video of experiments. It shows a controller sitting in a chair with a large hemispheric scanner over his head, like the sit-down hair dryers you find in hair salons.

Both the EEG and NIRS techniques are established but the analyzing process for the data is new. Honda said the system uses statistical processing of the complex information to distinguish brain activities with high precision without any physical motion.

Just as compelling:

The next not-so-big thing: Nanogenerators

Such generators could be used to power sensors for detecting cancer or measuring blood sugar level for diabetics, Wang says. He adds that within five to 10 years, the technology will mature to the point that these generators could be placed in the soles of shoes or the fabric of clothes so that people will be able to power their iPods and cell phones using the mechanical energy created by the rustling of their clothes or compression of their shoe insoles as they walk.

Friday, March 27, 2009


The living robot

At first, the young robot spent a lot of time crashing into things. But after a few weeks of practice, its performance began to improve as the connections between the active neurons in its brain strengthened. "This is a specific type of learning, called Hebbian learning," says Warwick, "where, by doing something habitually, you get better at doing it."

Monday, March 16, 2009

I'd be making an expression like that too if I knew the blade runners were after me.

Life-like walking female robot (with video)

Japanese scientists have unveiled a female humanoid walking robot at Tsukuba City, north east of Tokyo.

The robot, named HRP-4C, has 30 motors in its body that allow it to walk and move its arms as well as eight motors on its face to create expressions like anger and surprise.

She will also make a special appearance in a Tokyo fashion show and will go on sale for around $200,000 (£142,000).

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Wait -- isn't this from a Bruce Sterling novel?

Airborne microbots to create wi-fi zones in disaster situations

Autonomous flying quadcopter robots built from off-the-shelf parts in €300 kits (US$380), could establish radio networks for phones and wireless Internet in disaster zones. The system is being developed by German researchers at the Ilmenau University of Technology, which is seeking phD students to assist with the project.

When infrastructure is damaged or destroyed, it's vital that people are able to access information or call for help, and that teams on the ground can communicate efficiently. The quadcopter bots could provide ad-hoc, temporary networks for communication more quickly than technicians on the ground.