January 28, 2013

GE Brings Good Robots to Light

We're not sure how we missed this one but we figure later is better than never. Late last yeah GE unveiled their latest commercial that pays tribute to some of the most famous robots, including Data. We saw this during the Golden Globes last week and just had to share. See how many you recognize.

Via GE YouTube Channel

Read More in: Advertising | Robot Videos

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January 21, 2013

Harbin Restaurant Fully Robot Staffed

China has joined the ranks of robot-run eateries with its Robot Restaurant in Harbin. We are talking full-scale serving here, from the Wall-E-esque greeter to the chefs to the servers. All told there are 20 of them um, employed. Each server bot follows a track on the floor and each has sensors for avoiding obstacles as well as a smattering of Chinese for conversation. Opened since June 2012, the robots were designed by the Harbin Haohai Robot Company with price tags ranging from $31,500 - $47,000 apiece. Not a bad deal since they will never require lunch breaks or tips.

Via Cnet

Read More in: Robot Videos | Service Robots

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January 14, 2013

Goosinator Scares Away Pesky Geese

Because many see them as pests in parks or other open meeting places, Randy Claussen created the Goosinator, a bright orange RC creature designed to keep the large birds away. We think they are scary enough to keep humans away as well. At a cost of $3,000, the robocreature can move up to 25 mph, grinning evilly the entire time of operation. So far Colorado, Massachusetts, Wisconsin and New York have invested. This is definitely a positive alternative to removing geese by deadlier means.

Via Goosinator

Read More in: Robot Videos | Service Robots

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January 11, 2013

Must Have: Windup Robots

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These Wind Up Bots come in packs of 12 and are perfect for playing with during that nasty snowstorm. Each is 2 ΒΌ" and are randomly picked. And for the girliest of girls, the Noggin Pink Windup moves her head, arms and hips. P.S. She also comes in blue and a pair of green and purple.

Via Windup Robots

Read More in: Must Have Robot Friday | Robot Toys

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January 9, 2013

Hedgehogs to Study Phobos

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Marco Pavone is leading a team at the Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics at Stanford that are developing robotic hedgehogs to study the Martian moon Phobos. The half meter wide rolling bots will autonomously hop and tumble in 10 meter moves on the surface. Working with NASA and MIT, the 3 year mission includes a Phobos Surveyor that will act as mother ship for up to 6 of the hedge bots while orbiting around Mars and collect data from them that can be sent back to Earth. There is no official ok for the project but the participants are hoping it will occur in the next 20 years.

Via Stanford

Read More in: Robot Science/Medicine | Robot Vehicles

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January 7, 2013

Vomiting Larry Tests Reach of Norovirus

We are not sure what possessed the Health and Safety Laboratory in Derbyshire, UK to build Vomiting Larry but we suppose someone had to do it. The humanoid simulated vomiting system will help researchers to study the norovirus, one of the worst strains of its kind. And the faithful bot will help the Health Protection Angency determine how it is spread. They have already found that it literally has a reach of up to three meters.

More than a million people have been affected by the virus this season in the UK while the United States say it reaches 21 million annually. We pity the team member who had to clean up the mess when it comes to listing that on their resume.

Via BBC

Read More in: Robot Science/Medicine | Robot Videos

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January 4, 2013

Must Have: Chip, the Robotic Desk Organizer

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Chip is a friendly desk organizer that is multi-colored and made of MDF with metal and flex magnet accents. At a size of 6 x 2.5 x 7", he can hold pencils, pens, paper, paper clips or other accessories (not included.)

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Match Chip up with a 6 x 6 x 1/16" Janna Salak Love Does Not Compute Desk Clock. Made of high grade aluminum, it has a high gloss finish, is UV coated and is scratch-resistant. A single AA battery is not included but a transparent, acrylic stand is.

Via Home and Office Robots

Read More in: Miscellaneous Robots | Must Have Robot Friday

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January 2, 2013

Darpa Funds ACTUV for Following Subs

The Science Applications International Corporation has received a $58 million contract with Darpa to construct an Anti-Submarine Warfare Continuous Trail Unmanned Vehicle to chase down evil submarines. Promising a 60 to 90 day stint out in the water, the ACTUV will track with sonar and other sensors and link back to the Navy ship via satellite. It will then follow the sub to its port or return to its own. If you can make it through this rather lengthy video you will get a better idea of the autonomous bot's place in the battlefield water.

Via CIMSEC

Read More in: Military Robots | Robot Videos

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December 31, 2012

Roboy - Mechanical Child Labor

Engineers from the University of Zurich's Artificial Intelligence Lab have begun a rush job on a service robot designed to look like a humanoid boy that will be unveiled March 2013. To be named Roboy, the 1.2m tall bot will have artificial tendons for smoother actions. He will also have soft skin and his face will be designed after taking a poll helping decide what it should look like. While the project has 15 partners and 40 engineers, the creators are hoping that it can find other backers. A donation of $55,000 means adoption and a logo on Pinocchiobot.

While we understand their zeal in wanting to help the planet with helpers for the infirm and elderly, we have a silly notion that Roboy morally represents a victim of robotic child labor.

Via Roboy

Read More in: Robot Videos | Service Robots

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December 28, 2012

Must Have: Battleship - The Movie

Imagine a movie based on a game. Sure, it has been done with Real Steel derived from the Rock 'Em Sock 'Em Robots so it makes perfect sense to create one for Battleship. They have even made a special Movie Edition.

You would wonder if this could be successful but it is worth viewing just to see how they pulled it off. A battleship/museum is the hero, saving the planet from evil aliens. Starring Alexander Skarsgard, Rhianna operating the big guns and David Schwimmer for comic relief. CGI runs amok throughout the film where there are plenty of robot weapons and vehicles. The best part, however, is that most of the ammo used to attack are giant pegs and you can play along yelling, "Hit!" every time one meets its mark.

Via Robot Movies

Read More in: Must Have Robot Friday | Robot Movies | Robot Toys | Robot Videos

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December 26, 2012

Robot Rodeo Bomb Squad Competition


For the past 3 years, 10 teams have been competing in a Robot Rodeo to perform bomb squad chores. Orlando's $250,000 entry into the competition managed to move through a dark building, go over a curb and stairs, shoot water at a targe,t then remove a faux hand grenade. Each team is required to complete the task in less than 35 minutes. The prize for all of this is the honor of hosting the next year's event. Volusia county won this year.

ArrowContinue reading: "Robot Rodeo Bomb Squad Competition"

Read More in: Robot Videos | Service Robots

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December 24, 2012

Burrito Bomber - Remote Control Delivery

A team at Darwin Aerospace must have been too busy to stop working when they came up with the idea of the Burrito Bomber. The idea here is to order a burrito via an app while your phone sends your location. A burrito is loaded into a Delivery Tube which is flown and dropped to you.

They used a SkyWalker X8 Flying Wing with Ardupilot to navigate. The Burrito gets dropped with the help of a Quantum RTR Bomb System, a 3" diameter mailing tube, and 3D printed parts.The plane works either manually or autonomously. They utilize a Futaba 9C controller and EzUHF transmitter. Full instructions on their site means that you can make your own Burrito Bomber.

Before this, the team concentrated on air and space exploration projects so perhaps this latest one with bring them enough PR to garner them some backing for future ideas. Imagine a fleet of pizza delivery saucers!

Via Darwin Aerospace

Read More in: Robot Vehicles | Robot Videos

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December 21, 2012

Must Have: Winter Robot Caps

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Snow has finally arrived here in the Midwest so it is time to drag out your winter duds, including your very own Robot Cap. A one-size-fits-all, it has an Acrylic exterior and a warm, fleece liner in its interior.

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For kids, there is also a Robot Cap that includes 3" antennas. It is made of Acrylic, is jacquard knit and needs to be hand washed.

Via Winter Robot Caps

Read More in: Must Have Robot Friday | Wearable Robots

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December 19, 2012

Milli-motein - Tiny, Foldable Chain Robot

MIT keeps cranking out those robots. This time they have one that can actually fold itself into almost any shape. The Milli-motein is the planet's smallest chain robot that operates under the assumption that a 3D shape can be formed by folding a long chain from subunits. The team does not yet have a perfect set of steps for the bot to follow, but because the experiment has so far proven that they can make an autonomously folding universal device, that certainly gives it merit.

Think of it as a kind of Swiss Army robot. Team member Ara Knaian is much better at describing this than we are.

Via MIT

Read More in: Robot Science/Medicine | Robot Videos

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December 17, 2012

NASA Tackles Gangnam and 12.22.2012

It seems that even NASA is now hooked on Gangnam and has its own video. Called NASA Johnson Style (named after the Space Center, you pervs.) We don't know where in their budget they got funding to afford it but not only is it worth a viewing, it will certainly give them some well deserved extra PR. While some astronauts and techies have cameos, we are sad to say that although a couple of dummies made the cut to appear, Robonaut 2 did not.

By the way, NASA has also released a video concerning that end of the world that they say will not occur, appropriately titled "Why the World Didn't End Yesterday." If you are one of those that is fretting over it to the point of mania, hunker down with someone you love Friday.

Via NASA

Read More in: NASA | Robot Videos

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