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UPenn’s TitanArm provides robotic exoskeleton lifting power for industrial and medical uses at an affordable price. (via UPENN)     Out of a total of four submissions to the Intel sponsored Cornell Cup competition, the University of Pennsylvania’s TitanArm garnered enough interest to snag the top prize at the event held at Walt Disney World May 3rd-4th.   The TitanArm was designed as a cheaper alternative to commercially available exoskeleton systems that can range ...
(left) 19 year old Romanian high school student develops a low cost self-driving car technology (Right) that may soon make a standard self-driving feature feasible for automakers. (Pics via Ionut Budisteanu, MSN, and Azcentral.com)   Shortly after hosting the college oriented Cornell Cup Engineering competition, Intel was back at it this past weekend as the host of the world’s largest high school science research competition - the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair held ...
Handibot prototype renders (via ShopBot Tools)   It has been recently argued that the Neanderthals were able to make versatile multi-tools blades by delivering precise blows to a rock. Tens of thousands of years later, homo sapiens are still attempting to make even more compact, multi-use tools. The North Carolina company, ShopBot Tools, has set out to make one of the first Smart Digital Power Tools, able to be programmed to do all sorts of manufacturing tasks, and they are calling on all ...
The WeatherSignal app concept GUI. (via OpenSignal)   As smartphones continue to be upgraded with an increasingly larger set of data harvesting sensors, the use of such vastly available localized data naturally becomes a significant factor in the development of novel mobile apps. A smartphones such as the industry leading, sensor-packed Galaxy S4 - equipped with a barometer, magnetometer, accelerometer, thermometer, and hygrometer - creates a vast potential for individualized data exploita ...
Like a futuristic fossil, MIT's Cheetah bot seeks to replicate the real thing (via MIT)   Speed and power are not everything. A team at MIT’s Biomimetics Robotics Lab is showing that huge improvements in the function of a quadruped robot can be made by following nature’s biometrics in animals to achieve their efficiency. The robot, called the Cheetah Bot, employs a biomimetic architecture to run at 13.7 mph at efficiency much higher than bipedal robots and approaching the effic ...
Linkbots in action (via Borobo & kickstarter)   Designing, creating, and programming robots is no easy task and can take years to accomplish and that’s just for companies that can sink a few million dollars into those R&D projects. For those of us who don’t quite have that much money, it’s almost near impossible to get our coffee-can for a head design to even move. Barobo Inc. (designers of the Modbot) is looking to take away a lot of the frustration out of hobbyis ...
Cabe Atwell

Love and Robots

Posted by Cabe Atwell May 20, 2013
Lovotics robot in an interaction. The bot is a dome shaped bot with a handful of sensors, battery, and wheels for movement. Very lovable. (via Lovotics)   The level of attachment between a human and a machine can only go so far. Although some people can become addicted to computers, it is the human at the other end of the connection that really keeps people engaged. A new field of robotics is studying and developing machines that will offer what we all want from other people: an affective ...
Yale’s GRAB LAB focuses on the design of grasping & manipulation robotic systems for a wide range of practical applications. It’s most recent design, designed alongside Harvard and iRobot, was accepted into DARPA’s ARM program. (via DARPA)   DARPA’s Autonomous Robotic Manipulation (ARM) program sets out to promote the creation of human-like robotic hands with a high degree of manipulation control for various applications. Being as though DARPA is a military focu ...
From strt to finish. X2Jiggy shows how his controller is built. Worth a watch for the great 8-bit tune. (via x2Jiggy)   Since the emergence of smart phones and development boards such as the Raspberry Pi, there has been an increased popularity of retro games coming to these platforms. Emulators exist on phones, which can be easily downloaded to quickly begin gaming, and the same is true for the Raspberry Pi. As for owners of the Pi, retro games can also be a good motivational first project ...
Victor Mateevitsi using the SpiderSense tech at UIC (via VMateevitsi & Lance Long)   It is no doubt that emerging technologies are now beginning to introduce sensory enhancing devices that drastically change the way humans perceive the world around them. Brain scanners that can detect stress-inducing information overloads, smartphone apps that detect emotion through voice recognition software, and the Army uniform of the future that can be used to alert soldiers to the severity of an i ...
Concept diagram. The idea is to reconstruct what is inside the building based on heat signitures. (via Dr. Pietro Ferraro)   Imaging technology has grown in its capability of capturing stunning, real-life quality scenes through the recording of light, or other electromagnetic radiation, with the appropriate sensor. Of course, great images typically require ideal lighting conditions. Over the years, firefighters have begun to use infrared imaging technologies to assist their vision through ...
System concept block-diagram (via MIT)   If robots will ever serve humans--or take over the world--they are going to have to be able to build their own tools and furniture... like a table. A duo of bots coordinated by software developed by Ross Knepper, Todd Layton, John Romanishin and Daniela Rus at MIT’s Distributed Robotics Lab, is already getting started on achieving the ability to put the simplest of Ikea furniture together.   Knepper and his team have devised a system tha ...
Meet Shuntaro-kun: the robotic foot-odor sniffing dog that cuddles up to nice smelling feet and passes out in the presence of BO. (via Asahi)     When natural disasters strike an area close to home, it’s likely common for engineers and technologists to begin thinking of ways that technology can help prevent future events from happening, and possibly even uplift the people of now disaster-ridden areas. That is precisely what occurred after the recent Great East Japan Earthquake t ...
There have been plenty of previous attempts to build robots capable of climbing up challenging vertical environments. Of these, the most impressive thus far used tiny hairs called setae on their footpads to adhere to surfaces. These hairs mimic a gecko’s method of climbing up walls, and hence, are limited in their payload capacity - the bots can only carry their own weight. A team of researchers from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich recently took a creative approach impl ...
The amazing Robo Raven created by UMD Robotics. So realistic in flight that a passing hawk mistook it for prey! Read their full press realease on the Robo Raven here. http://www.eng.umd.edu/html
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The vague concept from DARPA   Most of today’s robots need some type of programming in order to carry out their intended tasks or functions. This applies to autonomous as well, even those with learning capabilities such as Robot Consortium’s iCub (able to learn languages like that of a child) need to have some specialized base-programming to function. Researchers from DARPA have recently announced that they have been developing a robotic brain that ‘looks and functions ...

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