robots

  • CMU's snake robot: Coming up through a toilet near you

    http://blip.tv/scripts/flash/showplayer.swf?enablejs=true&file=http%3A//blip.tv/rss/flash/817026&feedurl=http%3A//crunchgear.blip.tv/rss/&autostart=false&brandname=CrunchGear&brandlink=http%3A//crunchgear.blip.tv/ Got to see CMU’s Snake Robot up close and it’s really something. The bugger rolls around the floor and can climb up pipes and through holes with ease… Read More

  • Robots with guns: The ethical dilemma

    Robots with guns: The ethical dilemma

    I am but a toy! I was at the show today talking to some folks about the current crop of military robots from people like Foster-Miller and even iRobot. These are robots deployed by the army to handle bomb detection, room clearing, and all the nasty stuff you don’t want to send humans in for. For years, politicians have been deriding these things as remote controlled toys rather than viable… Read More

  • RoboBusiness 2008: Kind of small, lots of cool stuff

    RoboBusiness 2008: Kind of small, lots of cool stuff

    Just got to RoboBusiness 2008 in Pittsburgh, PA where I’ve seen more cool things in a 100 square foot space than I’ve ever seen at the South Hall 8AC57.9.B at CES. There are quite a few kit makers here for education and research along with some cool research projects by Carnegie Mellon and other local universities. Read More

  • To spark interest in robots, man wants to build 60-foot-tall Gundam

    To spark interest in robots, man wants to build 60-foot-tall Gundam

    In order to form a more perfect union and get kids interested in robots and robotics (but not cockfights), some Japanese guy, Takayuki Furuta, created blueprints to build a 60-foot-tall Gundamn. The total cost of such a robot comes out to $742 million, which is, I think, the price Haliburton charges for a single tire. in Iraq. (Oh no, he’s getting political!) Furuta, realizing that the… Read More

  • Toshiba's ApriPoco helper robot looks innocent for a reason

    Toshiba's ApriPoco helper robot looks innocent for a reason

    First, this is not an April Fools joke post. Biggs does those, not me. This is ApriPoco, a small helper robot created by Toshiba. It can learn how to accomplish any number of tasks using its built-in infrared sensor, like turning on the TV, useful for the elderly (or lazy). There’s a reason why ApriPoco looks as childlike as it does. Its developers know how frustrated people can get when a… Read More

  • Review: WowWee Flytech Butterfly

    It flies like a real butterfly! I was actually quite surprised at the build quality on this thing. Usually these sorts of things blow into a million pieces on the first day but the Flytech butterfly withstood quite a few crash landings during our trials. The dog also bit it a few times, which is usually the kiss of death for toys like this. Read More

  • Robotic cockfighting at the Robo-One Championships

    http://www.reuters.com/resources/flash/includevideo.swf?edition=US&videoId=78870 Here’s something everyone can enjoy; intricate robot fighters bobbing, weaving, and punching. It’s the twice-yearly Robo-One Championships in Tokyo. The most recent tournament played host to 112 robots ranging from your standard karate-bot to the more interesting chicken robot named… Read More

  • Gigantic undersea trench-digging, cable-laying robot

    Gigantic undersea trench-digging, cable-laying robot

    I said “cable-laying,” get it? Anyhoo, if you’re in the market for a huge remote controlled submersible robot that weighs 50 tons and can bury oil and gas pipes at the bottom of the ocean, look no further than the Ultra Trencher 1 by a company called SMD. It uses propellers to submerge itself to depths up to a mile and then uses ninja-like high-pressure “jet swords”… Read More

  • Man killed by gun-toting robot in his own driveway!

    [photopress:starscream_deletedscene1.jpg,full,center] At first the headline grabs your attention, but then you read the story and find out that the man who died built the killer robot specifically to kill himself. I’m sorry, but that is so badass. He was an 81-year old man who’s out of state relatives wanted to put him in a nursing home, because they were selfish bastards. So he… Read More

  • The march of the RoBeasts continues: Technics Robot Crab

    The march of the RoBeasts continues: Technics Robot Crab

    I’ve just downloaded an inexplicably large video (120mb for 30 seconds? It’s called YouTube, guys) of this crab doing its thing. It’s certainly not as cool as the BigDog robot from yesterday, but it’s also not a multi-million-dollar DARPA-funded military all-terrain bioroid. It’s for scrambling around on sea floors and taking samples or pictures. Like the BigDog, they… Read More

 
  • BigDog Robot: Imagine this thing coming at you through the woods

    Good lord. If you want to see the future of warfare and fear, this is it. This is the BigDog quadraped robot designed by Boston Dynamics for DARPA and can climb over rubble, walk through snow, and even save itself when slipping on ice. It can apparently carry over 300 pounds. When they put a gun on this bastard and set it lose behind enemy lines, watch out. via Giz Read More

  • Open source robots in homes by, like, next week

    Open source robots in homes by, like, next week

    Willow Garage makes “open source” robots and is hoping their work, in conjunction with some Cali universities, will soon appear in homes around the world. Their robots, called the Stanford Artificial Intelligence Robot Project (STAIR), have a standard operating system and all of the mechanics and software is open source, meaning you can modify your STAIR robot as you see fit. Now that… Read More

  • I for one welcome our laser-guided, Mac Mini-powered robot masters

    [photopress:7579_large_mechrobot.jpg,full,center] Right now, plugged into my Mac I have an iPod Touch, an SD card reader, and a currently charging Palm Centro. Did you know that you can also control a laser-guided robot with your Mac? It’s true! Scienticians from Georgia Tech and Emory University have developed just such a robot, called the EL-E, which is capable of tracking objects targeted… Read More

  • robuCAB: People-movers à la française

    robuCAB: People-movers à la française

    French company Robosoft has created an interesting infrastructure-less solution to transit in the city. The robuCAB is a little electric four-seater that uses a pair of cameras to monitor the area in front of it and the curb, which it follows very very carefully. DARPA this isn’t. Of course, if they take the same amount of care with their guidance software as they do with their picture… Read More

  • Robot soldiers pose threat to human life

    [photopress:killerrobots.jpg,full,center] An artificial life expert warned today that robotic soldiers (like the one pictured here) pose a threat to human life, and not just the bad guys’ lives. The robots, said the dude from the University of Sheffield, are currently safer in that they need a human being to give the final go-ahead to open fire. As the technology improves, however, this last… Read More

  • Google Lunar X Prize: Send your shoeboxes to the mooooooon

    Google Lunar X Prize: Send your shoeboxes to the mooooooon

    Google is sponsoring a $20 million prize to the first group that can drop a robotic spacecraft on the moon. Once its there it has to send video and data back to Earth and move 1500 feet. They expect the contest to end in 2012, just in time for a lame-duck President Obama to send out the first wave of attack ships against in the invading Zixron forces. Team Italia’s solution, shown above… Read More

  • Hawks are stupid, think WowWee FlyTech Dragonfly is real

    Hawks are stupid, think WowWee FlyTech Dragonfly is real

    So, out on Long Island some kid’s FlyTech Dragonfly was snatched out of the air by a hawk that mistook it for actual prey. Either the hawk is really stupid and/or blind or WowWee’s flying robot is the technological marvel they claim it to be. I’ve seen it in action multiple times and for anything to fly that isn’t meant to fly, it’s pretty impresive. After… Read More

  • New lovey-dovey Pleo download for Valentine's Day

    New lovey-dovey Pleo download for Valentine's Day

    Oh Pleo, you’re the best almost-real dinosaur friend a guy and/or gal could ever have. Just in time for St. Valentine’s Day comes a new behavior download for your Pleo pet. He coos, he flirts, he slices and dices! From the PleoWorld.com website, Has Pleo been bitten by the love bug? He sulks when left alone, but pet him … he wiggles, coos, and sighs happily. Cuddle Pleo and his… Read More

  • Ocean glider powers itself with water's heat, maps the boring parts of the Caribbean

    Ocean glider powers itself with water's heat, maps the boring parts of the Caribbean

    This little robot has been cruising the Caribbean for two months now, mapping out currents, temperatures, and other subaquatic trivia. It’s at least partially powered by ocean temperature gradients — the details are at the bottom of the article, I don’t entirely understand it but it sounds cool. It’s doing a boring but essential job and I think they should put a bunch more… Read More

  • Video: Engineering students control robot with Nintendo DS

    Some French students have figured out a way to use the Nintendo DS to control a small robot. The above video shows someone controlling the robot by using the touchscreen, by tilting the DS and by using Pictochat. Longtime readers will know that I think robots, in all their forms, are silly, but this I like. Today these kids are screwing around with robots and handheld video game systems, tomorrow… Read More