• Cracking a safe the DIY robot way

    Hypothetically, say you found a safe in your garage. Maybe left there by the previous owner, maybe part of your wife’s family’s old junk — nobody seems to know. You hear an intriguing rattle inside; what could it be? Gold? Silver? An old stick of gum? Only one way to find out: design a robot to attempt every combination possible on the lock and have it run night and… Read More

  • Proposed military robot would refuel by eating human bodies. What could possibly go wrong?

    Those of you who follow the Robocalypse tag know that I find the rise of machine-based warfare and biomimetic freakery… troubling. Well, it just got a lot more so. Not content to have robots simply feed on widely available sunlight, or use an versatile diesel engine or something, some robo-pioneers have decided that this new robot should refuel on biomass. Yes, it can use plants and… Read More

  • Because there weren't enough Ro-bats in the world

    “Biomimetic miniature flying platforms” appears to be the theme this week. Just a few days ago we saw a hummingbird robot meant to hover in and out of buildings, and now there’s this ro-bat being put together at North Carolina State University. Here is my question: were there not enough bats in the world already? Read More

  • Hummingbot UAV hovering in slow motion

    I’m concerned that before long, every critter out there will be replaced by a biomimetic robot surrogate. With BigDog, LittleDog, mechafish, swifferbot, and the robo-ant already on the march, it won’t be long before the pleasant tweet and buzz of nature is replaced by the noise of servos and tiny guns. The latest fiend to come out of DARPA human-extinction research money is this… Read More

  • Kobe Gigantor robot monument to rival life-size Gundam, weigh much more

    I think we adequately covered the life-size Gundam statue in Odaiba, but apparently that was just the beginning. Kobe has decided that it needs its own monument to an anime robot (what recession?), and they’ve chosen as the object of their adoration Tetsujin-28, AKA Gigantor. Of a similar height to a Gundam mecha but significantly… more stout, the Gigantor statue will stand 59… Read More

  • Jesus Recommends: this little rolling robot

    Before you get excited, I should probably state for the record that the headline is totally fake. There’s no way to tell whether Jesus actually recommends this robot &mdash he’s just holding it. He might not like it at all. But if that’s the case, I would have to respectfully disagree with him there, because this little robot looks like a lot of fun. It’s a… Read More

  • Man's arrest for Barrel Monster stunt exposes ridiculously high barrel pricing

    Have you ever driven down the highway when there’s construction work going on and wondered who makes all the money from selling the orange barrels used to block off lanes? That’s a lot of barrels. So many barrels, in fact, that a student at NC State in Raleigh, North Carolina helped himself to three of them and constructed this most-excellent Barrel Monster. Read More

  • I, for one, welcome our new prosthetic robot arms

    The Department of Veterans Affairs is testing a fancy new prosthetic arm developed in conjunction with DARPA, the folks that brought us the Internet, and Deka Research, founded by Dean Kamen, creator of the Segway. Unlike a traditional rigid plastic arm, or God forbid a metal hook, the Luke Arm — a reference to Luke Skywalker’s artificial hand from Empire Strikes Back —… Read More

  • Dustbot: a real-life Wall-E you can text

    Assuming you are European and never have more than a head-sized bag of garbage to throw away, this Dustbot appears to be the perfect trash-related companion. I believe the idea is that an army of these things will lurk in every city and constantly collect garbage, eliminating the need for garbage trucks to come to every home. It navigates via GPS and can be summoned by a text message… Read More

  • CrunchDeals: Roomba 535 for $150

    If you’re a stickler for clean floors (note: I am not) but you can’t afford a live-in maid to clean them every day (note: I can not) and you’re not afraid of robots (note: I am, deathly) then perhaps you need a Roomba. Read More

  • EATR defense robot scrounges for its own food

    This is pretty old but I thought I’d put it out there in light of recent movements by our future robotic overlords to become autonomous. The Energetically Autonomous Tactical Robot (EATR) by RTI has a built-in foraging system that can harvest biomass as well as fuel like gasoline, propane, coal, and solar energy on the go. It powers itself with a combustion engine and can hunt out and… Read More