Devin Coldewey reports: Robots have been a major focus in the technology world for decades and decades, but they and basic science, and for that matter everyday life, have largely been non-overlapping magisteria. That’s changed over the last few years, as robotics and every other field have come to inform and improve each other, and robots have begun to infiltrate and affect our lives in countless ways. So the only surprise in the news that the prestigious journal group Science has established a discrete Robotics imprint is that they didn’t do it earlier.
In a mere 50 years, robots have gone from being a topic of science fiction to becoming an integral part of modern society. They now are ubiquitous on factory floors, build complex deep-sea installations, explore icy worlds beyond the reach of humans, and assist in precision surgeries… Read the rest of this entry »
[VIDEO] IT’S ON: Megabots Inc. vs Suidobashi Heavy Industry: USA Challenges Japan to Giant Robot Duel, Japan Accepts Fight!Posted: July 7, 2015
“Suidobashi, we have a giant robot. You have a giant robot. You know what needs to happen. We challenge you to a duel. Prepare yourselves and name the battlefield. In one year, we fight.”
Japanese engineers have accepted a challenge from an American company to duel with giant robots.
It all started last week when American company MegaBots, Inc. released a YouTube video showing off its 12,000-pound Mk. II robot.
Wearing an American flag as a cape, MegaBots’ Matt Oherlein bragged about the Mk II’s big guns: a cannon capable of shooting 3-pound paintballs at 100 mph. Read the rest of this entry »
Do you ever feel frustrated that you can’t keep tabs on your significant other at all times? Nervous that everyone is hanging out without you? Curious about what the heck your neighbors are doing over there?
Thankfully, there’s a Pocket Drone currently being funded on Kickstarter that will solve these problems and more. It only takes 20 seconds to unpack and launch. Then, you can load it up with any video camera you own, as long as the payload is less than half a pound. Hit record and you’re off, creating surveillance footage of everyone you know.
Control Pocket Drone with an app on your phone or tablet, and you can access hard-to-reach places like the café where that hot neighbor you’ve been Facebook stalking gets his coffee every morning.
Giuseppe Macri writes: The Drone User Group Network unveiled the latest — and smallest — in drone technology at the 2014 Consumer Electronics Show Wednesday night, the Pocket Drone, which surpassed its Kickstarter funding goal by more than $20,000 overnight.
Pocket Drone is a small multi-copter drone designed to carry high-quality cameras and shoot aerial footage, and can collapse into a transportable size smaller than a seven-inch tablet.
After debuting at CES Wednesday night, the project achieved its Kickstarter funding goal of $30,000 and was sitting at almost $60,000 as of Thursday afternoon, with 58 days of fundraising left to go.
You started out simple, piercing the dark with a cheap handheld flashlight as you traced a terrible rendition of your name through the air. You were hardly halfway through the last letter of your name before you were running over to the camera to see if it worked. You, like many a bored digital camera owner before you, had discovered light painting.
As its name implies, Pixelstick is… a stick of pixels
More specifically, the Pixelstick is a 6’ bar containing 198 full color LEDs. At the core of Pixelstick is a simple brain: a handheld controller, an SD card reader, and a bit of lightweight circuitry to parse images pulled from the card.
Here’s a video of Woojer’s Naimer pitching the concept earlier this year:
Natasha Lomas reports: Woojer is a wearable mobile accessory designed to allow its wearer to feel what they’re listening to on their mobile device — via the medium of haptic feedback — rather than simply having banging tunes inserted into their earholes. It’s also being aimed at gamers who want a more immersive in-game experience, or for watching movies or other audiovisual content on a mobile device.
The Israel-based startup behind Woojer, which closed a $600,000 angel round earlier this year, has been developing the product since the start of 2011. It currently has a working prototype — and plans to launch a Kickstarter campaign next month to raise funding for an initial production run. If that’s successful, they hope to ship to backers in early Spring 2014.
How exactly does Woojer work? Its creators describe it as a “tactile transducer” that reproduces sound as a polyphonic vibration, allowing a haptic, noiseless element to augment the standard stereo audio the user hears via their own headphones (which plug into the Woojer box via a 3.5mm headphone jack).
Unlike some of the rival offerings in this space, such as subpac and bassAware Holster, Woojer doesn’t require the user to strap on some form of backpack or wear a special headset. (Or look like they buy all their clothes at Cyberdog.) Instead, the roughly matchbox-sized box is clipped to clothing so it rests against the body. Its low frequency vibrations then create a physical bass sensation — similar to hearing live music at a concert or cinema surround sound. Or that’s the theory. Read the rest of this entry »
PIXY! Teaching Micro-controllers Boards to See: Scientists Predict Major Implications for the Cat-Pestering IndustriesPosted: September 10, 2013
Now in the closing few days of its Kickstarter campaign the Pixy camera board from Carnegie Mellon is an interesting departure from cameras intended to be connected to micro-controllers like the Arduino. It isn’t just another camera, it’s a “smart” vision sensor. Read the rest of this entry »
Meet AIO Robotics‘ Zeus “3D copy device”: a 3D printer, 3D scanner and 3D object faxing machine that’s blasted past its $100,000 Kickstarter funding goal after about a day on the crowdfunding trail. This hybrid box is on a mission to consumerise 3D printing by converging multiple functions and taking away some of the rough, manual edges.