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EZ Robot “Revolution” Line Sets Sights on Modular Robotics
01/02/14 — Ez-Robot, a small company based in Calgary, Canada, is aiming to start a new "revolution" in robotics. The company's new Revolution line is a series of small, hobby-sized robots with modular parts, easy-to-use features, and snap-together mechanics. The line consists of three new robot kits: a humanoid two legged walker,…

On Point: Robotic Cubli’s Superb Balance
12/24/13 — Created by Swiss researchers at Zurich's ETH Institute for Dynamic Systems and Control, the Cubli has three internal spinning wheels, which provide a gyroscopic balancing force.  Cubli can be commanded to fall in any direction. Combining these three abilities—jumping up, balancing, and controlled falling—the Cubli is able to 'walk'." Inertial…

DelFly, the Autonomous Robot Dragonfly
12/18/13 — TU Delft researchers have developed the DelFly Explorer, the world's first Micro Air Vehicle with flapping wings that can avoid obstacles by itself. The uniqueness of this achievement lies in the DelFly Explorer's very low weight (20 grams, i.e. a few sheets of paper), and this opens up new possible…

Future Robots Have a Soft Side
12/11/13 — Someday soon, your life may be saved by a weird-looking octopus, squid, or caterpillar – a squishy, form-changing, animal-like device that’s actually a soft robot. Scientists are exploring the fluidity and deformable nature of animals like those mentioned above, as well as insects, starfish, and lizards. Their goal is to…

DIY Robotics Is Easy (and Colorful) with MOSS Cubelets
12/04/13 — Colorado-based Modular Robotics has taken its Cubelets robotic building blocks to the next level with MOSS, a modular robot construction system that requires no coding or wiring skills on the part of the user. The kits are made up of various modules that communicate with each other via a single button contact…

Sea Turtle Robot Flips Around Wrecks
11/27/13 — Diving shipwrecks can be dangerous work. As their name implies, these deep sea curiosities are underwater disaster zones that could trap an unwary diver. Robotic vehicles can help, but most are too big to explore the nooks and crannies and others get their power via a tether to the mothership…

Spherical Joint Mechanism Inspired by Penguins’ Rocket-Like Propulsion
11/20/13 — Back in 1991, Nature published a picture from the IMAX movie Antarctica, along with the caption: “Emperor penguins may be waddling jokes on land, but underwater they can turn into regular rockets…accelerating from 0 to 7 m/s in less than a second.” That’s all it took to inspire Flavio Noca,…

Copy Clams: Taking Robotic Engineering Cues from Mollusks
11/13/13 — Engineering has always taken cues from biology. Natural organisms and systems have done well at evolving to perform tasks and achieve objectives within the limits set by nature and physics. That is one of the reasons Anette Hosoi, professor of mechanical engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, studies snails.…

It Floats! It Flies! It Rolls! Meet the Quadcopter That Does It All
11/06/13 — The University of Tokyo has found a new approach to an old problem. The university's Department of Mechano-Informatics puts out some really interesting robotic projects that focus generally on assistive humanoids and intelligent robotic systems. This time, they wanted a robot that could vary its locomotion method by the situation.…

Slow to Start, Humanoid Zeno Has “Soul” and Smarts
10/30/13 — David Hanson, the one-time Walt Disney sculptor with the University of Texas at Dallas PhD, has long dreamed of the day when humanlike robots would become affordable enough for everyone to own at least one. Way back in 2007, at Wired‘s NextFest, Hanson introduced the world to his offspring, 17-inch-tall Zeno, modeled…

Meet Poppy, Not Your Average 3D Printed Robot
10/24/13 — A new 3D-printed robot called Poppy is helping a team of French researchers study bipedal walking and human-robot interaction. They were able to design, fabricate, and assemble a relatively large robot for around €8,000 (US$11,000) including servo motors and electronics. That's about a third the cost of commercial robots in…

Qualcomm’s Brain-Inspired Chip Offers Next-Level Robotic Sensing
10/16/13 — This month, chipmaker Qualcomm opened up about its progress and goals in work on a brain-inspired chip architecture. The results are impressive. Computers that can mimic the human brain pose a challenge that attracts many computer scientists. While some people take comfort in the difference between computers and humans, such…

Mother Hen and Friendly Chicks Can’t Wait to Fly
10/09/13 — One of the more interesting concepts we saw at the AUVSI show this year (and possibly just ran across while we were sorting through our piles of conference swag) was this UAV, from Canadian company Eqquera. Called the SQ-EQQ, it consists of a "mother hen" autonomous delta-wing jet-thing that can…

Startups: Can You Pitch to Win at RoboBusiness?
10/03/13 — Let the games begin Can you deliver the best two-minute pitch of your life? Can you make an investor’s eyes bug out and an audience jammed with people grow suddenly very quiet as you speak? Can you mesmerize and thrill and wow all at the same time? If so, the RoboBusiness…

The Jellyfish Elimination Robotic Swarm (Yes, It’s a Thing)
10/02/13 — Jellyfish* are serious business. If you get enough of them in one place, bad things happen. And we're not just talking about some mildly annoying stings, but all-out nuclear war . Obviously, we have to fight back. With ROBOTS. In South Korea, jellyfish are threatening marine ecosystems and are responsible for about US $300 million…

Sprayable Carbon Nanotubes Could be the Solution for Low-Cost Sensors
09/25/13 — Researchers at the Technische Universitaet Muenchen (TUM) are showing the way toward low-cost, industrial-scale manufacturing of a new family of electronic devices. A leading example is a gas sensor that could be integrated into food packaging to gauge freshness, or into compact wireless air-quality monitors. New types of solar cells…

Glowing Robotic Tentacles Interact with Visitors at French Petting Zoo
09/18/13 — If you swing by the Petting Zoo in Orleans, France, don't expect to see goats. The robotic "pets" that reside there hang from the ceiling, glowing like so many "Tron" worms. The neon-lit creatures in this "artificial animalistic environment" by experimental architecture and design firm Minimaforms change behavior according to their interactions…

Honeybee Robotics Tools Reach Milestone of 300 Excavations on Mars
09/13/13 — Honeybee Robotics Spacecraft Mechanisms Corporation today announced that its tools on the last three generations of NASA’s Mars landers have reached a milestone, collectively completing 300 excavations of Martian dirt and rocks. This marks an important milestone for the physical exploration of the Martian landscape in the search for a…




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