robots

  • Watch This Robot Hunt And Kill Destructive Starfish

    Watch This Robot Hunt And Kill Destructive Starfish

    Dear friends: there is now a robot that can kill starfish underwater by hunting them down and injecting them with poison. The starfish in question is the Crown of Throns Sea Star, a destructive seadweller that has been hurting coral reefs for a while. They are so pervasive that they create massive populations – 100,000 per kilometer – in a few years. So now there’s a robot… Read More

  • Elon Musk Can’t Be That Afraid Of Robots, Check Out This Tesla Production Line

    Elon Musk Can’t Be That Afraid Of Robots, Check Out This Tesla Production Line

    Elon Musk has warned us about robots taking over with the help of AI. He’s even donated money to make sure that it doesn’t happen. However, it sure does seem like Tesla relies on robots quite a bit, even if they’re not being primed to turn the company into Skynet. At one point this year Musk referred to AI as “summoning the demons.” He says it’s still… Read More

  • Artificial Intelligence, Legal Responsibility And Civil Rights Crunch Network

    Artificial Intelligence, Legal Responsibility And Civil Rights

    I have been a huge science fiction fan as long as I can remember, and a recurring theme in both science fiction literature and movies is the creation of artificial intelligence. However, the subject is becoming increasingly more science and less fiction. Read More

  • Researchers Teach Robots To Avoid Childhood Bullies

    Researchers Teach Robots To Avoid Childhood Bullies

    Kids are mean. Just ask any robot. Robotics engineers have discovered a tendency for little kids – kindergarteners and grade schoolers – to be abusive towards robots when they’re not near their parents. To prove this, the researchers sent a wheeled robot out into a mall and watched it perambulate around foot traffic. When a little kid approached with his or her parent, the… Read More

  • Not Just An App: The Front End Of The Trillion-Dollar, Full-Stack Revolution Crunch Network

    Not Just An App: The Front End Of The Trillion-Dollar, Full-Stack Revolution

    Stop calling Uber, Airbnb and Munchery just apps. These apps are the front end of a full-stack revolution powered by cloud, mobile, drones, robots and AI. These apps started as simple solutions to match demand and supply, but they have the potential to reinvent entire industries. Read More

  • The Enterprise Model Of Pepper, SoftBank’s Robot, Will Cost $440 A Month To Rent

    The Enterprise Model Of Pepper, SoftBank’s Robot, Will Cost $440 A Month To Rent

    SoftBank will start taking pre-orders for the enterprise model of its humanoid robot, Pepper, on October 1. The company revealed today “Pepper for Biz” will cost 55,000 yen (about $440 a month) per month to rent. Contracts are for 36 months, so businesses have to spend a total of about $15,940 in rental charges. Read More

  • Vortex Is A Toy Robot That Teaches Kids How To Code

    Vortex Is A Toy Robot That Teaches Kids How To Code

    DFRobot, a company that has been building robots for the education market since 2008, this week introduced its first attempt at making a robot accessible to all children, with the debut of Vortex – an interactive, programmable robot aimed at kids 6 and up. The Vortex robot pairs with iOS and Android smartphones or tablets over Bluetooth, and lets kids control its movement by tapping… Read More

  • Scientists Turn To Seahorses For Nearly Unbreakable Limbs

    Scientists Turn To Seahorses For Nearly Unbreakable Limbs

    Researchers at Clemson University have created a new sort of robotic design based on the long, curled tail of the seahorse. The seahorse is unique because it consists of “square prisms surrounded by bony plates that are connected by joints.” Other animal tails are cylindrical and therefore easily crushed. The researchers write: Researchers found that the square prototype was… Read More

  • Nanometer-Sized Robots Can Now Take Colon Biopsies

    Nanometer-Sized Robots Can Now Take Colon Biopsies

    Researchers have invented a non-invasive way for thousands of nanometer-sized robots to perform tissue biopsies. Developed by Professor David Gracias at Johns Hopkins University, these starfish-shaped robots are able to enter the body, collect a minuscule tissue sample, then be extracted by a doctor. Read More

  • South Korean Team KAIST Wins DARPA Robotics Challenge With Bipedal Wunderdroid

    South Korean Team KAIST Wins DARPA Robotics Challenge With Bipedal Wunderdroid

    The DARPA Robotics Challenge Finals is a tough contest. Designed encourage researchers to create robots that can handle multiple difficult environments and tasks including breaching a door, turning a valve, and negotiating obstacles, many robots entered but only one won – DRC-HUBO from a joint team that included researchers from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas and Team KAIST from… Read More

  • Tynker, A Startup That Teaches Kids To Code, Now Works With Robots, Drones And More

    Tynker, A Startup That Teaches Kids To Code, Now Works With Robots, Drones And More

    Tynker, a startup that teaches children the fundamentals of programming by having them build their own games, is now expanding its platform to allow kids to control connected devices, including drones, robots and other “smart home” products, like lighting systems. The company will introduce these capabilities this weekend at the Bay Area Maker Faire in San Mateo, and the… Read More

  • Micro Tug Robots Can Pull Objects 2,000 Times Their Own Weight

    Micro Tug Robots Can Pull Objects 2,000 Times Their Own Weight

    Like the noble ant or the sassy-yet-lovable tugboat, Micro Tugs can pull more than their own weight. The robots, which come from Stanford’s Biomimetics and Dextrous Manipulation Lab, use a “controllable adhesive” plate that sticks to surfaces only when shear pressure is applied. In one case a 12 gram robot was able to pull objects 2,000 times its own weight. Read More

  • Welcome To The Age Of 4D Printers

    Welcome To The Age Of 4D Printers

    Welcome to Future World where the weird is commonplace! To wit: engineers at the ARC Centre of Excellence for Electromaterials Science have created a 4D printer. That doesn’t mean the printer outputs objects into the space-time continuum. Instead, it means they are building objects that can change based on the physics of the materials used. By extruding objects in multiple materials… Read More

  • A Robot That Bought Drugs Online Is Now Free From Police Custody

    A Robot That Bought Drugs Online Is Now Free From Police Custody

    If that headline doesn’t make much sense, welcome to the 21st century when a program designed to automatically buy random items from illegal marketplaces can be arrested by Swiss police. As you’ll recall, Swiss police seized a program called Darknet Shopper, a bot that visited darknet markets and bought random items with bitcoin. Most of the items were mundane – counterfeit… Read More

  • Rethink Robotics, Home Of Baxter, Brings A New Robot Arm To The Party

    Rethink Robotics, Home Of Baxter, Brings A New Robot Arm To The Party

    Remember Baxter, the robotic arm with a smiling face that you can teach to do simple, repeatable tasks? Well he has a little brother! Rethink Robotics’ Sawyer is a smaller, lighter Baxter with a higher-precision hand. While Baxter was designed to, say, place items in a box over and over again, Sawyer can be used for “tasks that require significant agility and flexibility.”… Read More

  • Four Japanese Startups Visit Me At The Bates Motel During SXSW 2015

    Four Japanese Startups Visit Me At The Bates Motel During SXSW 2015

    Operating out of Room #4 at the Bates Motel at SXSW 2015 (this is another story), I got the opportunity to interview a few fascinating startups that traveled from Tokyo to Austin, TX over the weekend to show their hardware-based concepts. During a rapid-fire demo session, I was able to see eight different startups and four really struck me as doing some novel work. Read More

  • RoboCore Is A Core For Your Robo

    RoboCore Is A Core For Your Robo

    Krakow-based RoboCore has just launched on Kickstarter and is looking for a mere $50,000 to help you build better robots. The device is essentially a brain for your robotic projects. It is compatible with LEGO MindStorms and allows you to control multiple servos and sensors. You can also stream audio and video through the box. You program it via an IDE and then upload instructions… Read More

  • Highly Dexterous Robot Can Fold Balloon Animals, Close Zip-Ties

    Highly Dexterous Robot Can Fold Balloon Animals, Close Zip-Ties

    The Terminator: The Skynet Funding Bill is passed. The system goes on-line November 14th, 2014. Human decisions are removed from strategic balloon animal-making. Skynet begins to learn at a geometric rate. It becomes self-aware at 2:14 a.m. Eastern time, November 30th. In a panic, they try to pull the plug. Sarah Connor: Skynet fights back. The Terminator: Yes. It folds eight balloon fish… Read More

  • Swiss Police Confiscate The Things Purchased Randomly By A Darknet Bot

    Swiss Police Confiscate The Things Purchased Randomly By A Darknet Bot

    Robots need ketamine too! And to supply their robot with drugs a group of Swiss techno-artists programmed an agent to randomly buy an item on a random darknet site with bitcoin, resulting in a cache of drugs and other contraband that, at first, was a fun art project and then caught the eye of the authorities. Called the Random Darknet Shopper, the robot simply found a random item and bought it. Read More

  • A Million-Dollar Robot Suit Is Available On Amazon Japan

    A Million-Dollar Robot Suit Is Available On Amazon Japan

    A few years ago we wrote about something called a Kuratas, a robotic mech suit that allowed the wearer to fire a BB Gatling gun whenever they smile at their soon-to-be vanquished enemies. When it appeared in 2012 everyone thought it was a funny joke. Now it’s available on Amazon Japan for $1 million. The robot is obviously a bit hobbled – the powers that be don’t want us… Read More

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