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Posts Tagged ‘Robot’

Technology: Disney’s Robot Stunt Doubles (Video)

Nice! With this tech, moviemakers could very well get realistic action shots, of some pretty daring (read: potentially dangerous) stuff, without having to risk human lives.

The robot acrobats can flip through the air and stick a landing every time.
– TechCrunch

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Technology: Hexa Is A Six-Legged ‘Bug Bot’ (Video)

Brrrr! This might give you the shakes. This robot is both creepy and amazing, but you can teach it your own tricks! Looks kind of like a forerunner of the version of the Sentinels that are in the trailers for the mutant thriller series, “The Gifted,” debuting this Fall on Fox.

Very creepy.

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Technology: SAW Robot Moves On Its Own Like A Worm And Can Be Shrunk Down For Use As A Medical Device (Video)

Came across this on the Interwebs. A robot that ‘moves like a worm’ that could be ‘shrunk and sent into your intestine’ sounds like a good idea… but ONLY by comparison.

(Yeah, compared to camera jammed on the end of a tube being pushed up your rectum for that colonscopy.)

So, um, lets focus on the tech and other applications for the 3D-printed SAW (Single Actuator Wave-like) robot that swims, crawls and climbs.

Intelligent motion, ease of manufacturability, design for scalability… HUGE selling points for any tech. Think about how way less cool a Roomba would be if we had to keep checking on it and repositioning it to finish the vacuuming, or if it was really hard or expensive to make. Imagine if there is some ‘much bigger’ Roomba cleaning huge warehouse floors somewhere. And that’s scaling it to big. What about scaling smaller? Wouldn’t fields involving exploration of hard-to-reach, hard-to-negotiate areas find shrunk down versions of this tech VERY useful?

(Wait. Are we talking about robo-worming our guts again??? Maaan PAUSE! PAAAAUSE!)

Enjoy the expo above.


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Introducing Boston Dynamics’ Handle: A Super-Powered Research Robot (Video)

Maaan, they keep making these robots better, stronger, faster, more flexible and agile and… you get the picture. But maybe these bot makers don’t ‘get the picture’ – the Skynet-Schwarznegger-Terminator, science-NONfiction horror picture. Then again, Boston Dynamics CEO Marc Raibert has been quoted as saying, “This is the debut presentation of what I think will be a nightmare-inducing robot.” So, maybe they do get it.

Handle is a research robot that stands 6.5 ft tall, travels at 9 mph and jumps 4 feet vertically. It uses electric power to operate both electric and hydraulic actuators, with a range of about 15 miles on one battery charge. Handle uses many of the same dynamics, balance and mobile manipulation principles found in the quadruped and biped robots we build, but with only about 10 actuated joints, it is significantly less complex. Wheels are efficient on flat surfaces while legs can go almost anywhere: by combining wheels and legs Handle can have the best of both worlds.
– Boston Dynamics

Oh… Handle is a research bot. Because all kinds of researchers need a 6.5-foot tall jumper with a four foot vertical (right, all kinds of NBA researchers). Oooo–kaaay. They must think we fell off the back of the turnip truck and it backed over our heads right after that!

(Not saying it’s not cool tech though.)

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Amazon’s Jeff Bezos Pilots The ‘Method-2’ Mech (Video)

South Korean robotics manufacturer Hankook Mirae Technology debuted its first prototype piloted mech, the Method-2.

Remember that sci-fi-come-to-life robot we posted on here a while back? Well, Jeff Bezos took it for a ride a few days back. And that’s big; as big as the movie monster bot (another demo reel of it above).

Pause: Who’s Jeff Bezos??? Oh, he runs Amazon. That all… BOOM! Like we said, BIG!

Building a movie bot is a project success. Getting rich folks excited about it? The business! Although military contracts would surely be expected to follow, Slate did some digging that revealed that they – maker Hankook Mirae Technology – ain’t ready yet (more here). Disaster relief and cleanup – that seems to be the ceiling for these mega man-driven machines. Not as sexy as a ‘War Machine’ (Marvel), but no small feat. And after the storm, when the help comes, best believe these will be welcomed like some of the hottest things walking!

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Movie-Like Robot Could Aid In Future Disaster-Relief Efforts (Video)

Art mirrors life. Sure. But art influences life. No doubt! You have seen me speak on here on how getting nerds excited about making sci-fi into scientific fact is a beautiful thing, right? Well, you’re about to read me do it again!

A robot likened to those in “Transformers” and “Alien” has been built in South Korea. Controlled by someone inside the head, It is meant to help in disaster areas.

You gad-dam rite I am gad-dam GEEKED about this!! The folks who worked on movie robots are making real-life heroic robotics a reality. C’mon! How are you NOT losing your sh!t over this??!

Watch the vid piece.


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Science/Technology: Scientists Use Gold And Rat Parts To Make A Remote-Controlled Artificial Stingray (Video)

Yeeeeesh! That looks creepy as f-ck! But a team of scientists at Harvard creating this artificial stingray out of rat parts (again, yeesh) and a pinch of gold is actually part of the team’s ongoing research on how to make artificial organs. This admittedly weird biotech is remote-controlled; able to be moved about in a tank using light beams.

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Amazing Landing Of A Boeing 777 at Frankfurt Airport (Video)

An amazing technological feat – a plane transforming and landing on its own feet – whether it was an animation or not. For the record, yes, it was. Watch, and you see if you can determine what ‘gave it away.’

(Still hella cool.)

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Technology: Boston Dynamics Introduces Its SpotMini ‘Dog Robot’ (Video)

Dog robot, dog bot, looking-like-a-giraffe-bot… whatever. Though we are into tech, gotta admit this is getting kinda creepy. Especially at the end of this clip (you can keep that cola can, um, ‘Spot’).

SpotMini is a new smaller version of the Spot robot, weighing 55 lbs dripping wet (65 lbs if you include its arm.) SpotMini is all-electric (no hydraulics) and runs for about 90 minutes on a charge, depending on what it is doing. SpotMini is one of the quietest robots we have ever built. It has a variety of sensors, including depth cameras, a solid state gyro (IMU) and proprioception sensors in the limbs. These sensors help with navigation and mobile manipulation. SpotMini performs some tasks autonomously, but it often uses a human for high-level guidance.

Still, this is a solid step forward in robotics tech; a mobile pick-and-place robot with some serious intelligence designed into it by Boston Dynamics.

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This ‘Atlas’ Robot Stands On Its Own Two Feet…And Walks And Lifts (Video)

This is damn near the robot from the Will Smith “I Robot” movie. Boston Dynamics introduces the next generation of Atlas, an amazing bipedal robot. As you can see in the video, Atlas can balance and walk on its own two (er) feet, indoors or outdoors, lift stuff (even remembering to bend at the knees). So human-like, and so humane. Watch how the Atlas resume work right away every time someone pushes it of messes with boxes; no attitude at all. Robots don’t have feelings. Sure. But you gotta feel something wonderful about this amazing technology when you watch.


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MIT Scientists Develop A Robotic Cheetah That Can Run & Jump (Video)

Robotics meet zoology at MIT: Scientists have nearly perfected designs for a robot cheetah.

Wait, wait! Doesn’t anybody over at MIT watch any sci-fi featuring enhanced robo-tech and/or animals? The Matrix, Planet Of The Apes…HELLO???!! So, cheetahs being high enough on the food chain to be sniffing our armpits, it’d be cool to make robo-cheetahs equipped with A.I. enabling them to run and jump without fatigue, right? No way, we’d have actual PREDATOR drones that could hunt and kill humans. Oh wait, we already do, huh?

Okay, so they’ll just come up with another name for the seek-and-eat cat-bots. Sigh. Talk about not knowing when to quit. Thanks for the sweet nightmares MIT… and VICE!


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Technology: South Korea Is Almost Ready For Autonomous Robots Called ‘Pibots’ To Fly Their Planes (Video)

“Pibots” have been designed to fly every kind of plane that a human was meant to fly, and they have been tested for most every simulation and situation… except actual cockpit flight in a full-sized aircraft. But South Korean researchers say that is coming soon (in the video report above).

Researchers in South Korea are developing a robotic pilot that could potentially replace humans in the cockpit. Unlike drones and autopilot programs which are configured for specific aircraft, the robots’ humanoid design will allow it to fly any type of plane with no additional sensors.

Just saying. Why does that first Pibot look like a skeleton after the crash? And “because it’s Halloween” is NOT an acceptable answer!

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PBS Digital Studios: The Rise of Artificial Intelligence (Video)

For decades, the talk researchers, writers, filmmakers, and the general public has been artificial intelligence (AI). We’re trying to create AI, but considering that humans have had countless millenia to evolve human intelligence as we know today. Recently, attempts to create AI have us looking to mimic our own brains in some way.

‘No matter how we get there, it is certain that artificial intelligence will have tremendous impact on our society and economy, and lead us down a path towards evolving our own definitions of humanity.’

– PBS OffBook

Interesting conversation starter. Check out this video.

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Technology: Baxter – The Robot That Will Change Manufacturing (Video)

Above is a demonstration video for a new kind of factory robot, Baxter, built by Rodney Brooks and his company Rethink Robotics. Industrial robots, to date, have been very limited in function and very expensive. Enter Baxter, a low-cost robot programmed to work in flexible ways that mimic human laborers… all the way down to facial expressions. But Brooks insists that Baxter will not replace human workers; only the clunky machines they currently work with. Melissa Kennedy of Atlanta Career Path posts:

Because they require a huge investment and aren’t able to deal with even slight changes in work flow, [current] manufacturing robots aren’t a good choice for completing repetitive tasks. They present significant safety hazards and are required to be separated from the human workforce by cages or safety glass. Because of this, robotics hasn’t been a viable option for most small manufacturers or warehouses… Now, that is all changing… Baxter, a new robot with common sense… is a low-cost robot that has the potential to change the face of manufacturing.

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