June 24, 2010

Emiew 2 Sees Improvements

Hitachi has been working on improvements on Emiew (Excellent Mobility and Interactive Existence as Workmate.) The humanoid robot can now distinguish voices while cancelling out his own inner buzzes and whirrs and can keep his balance when going over obstacles left on the floor. At a height of 32" and a weight of 30 lbs., he can do his thing on either 2 or 4 wheels. Plans for Emiew 2 include surveillance and as a visitor guide.

Via Hitachi

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June 21, 2010

Noby Reacts to Keeper, Kind of

Kosuke Nakamura, a University of Tokyo post grad student, proudly displayed 2ft. 4 inch baby Noby recently. The baby bot, equipped with cams for eyes, mics for ears and 600 tactile sensors, was designed to better help understand human nature and development. It seems to have a ways to go.

Via Day Life

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June 7, 2010

SpaceJustin - Telepresence Break Dancer


SpaceJustin was designed to head into the final frontier and assist his human counterparts. The musical bot made his debut at the recent International Aerospace Show in Germany and did a bit of break dancing via telepresence. Let's hope that the astronauts remember to give him plenty of room to do his thing.

Via io9

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May 31, 2010

Octavia Attends Fleet Week


The Office of Naval Research has been funding a project at their Research Lab in Washington D.C. Octavia, named after sci-fi author Butler, made an appearance at last week's Fleet Week in New York City. The autonomous bot was designed to work with humans in a computational cognitive way. She has an expressive face, including moving eyes and head, workable hands and fingers, and gets around on wheels. Her sensor and camera system can react to her environment. Octavia is one of 3 MDS robots, the others being Isaac (Asimov) and Lucas (George.)

Via Fox News

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May 12, 2010

SOHLA Plans Robotic Lunar Trip


SOHLA (Space Oriented Higashiosaka Leading Association) is planning to send a humanoid robot to the moon by 2015. At a cost of about $10.5 million, the Japan-based group believes that Maido can help stimulate the local economy by getting smaller organizations involved.

SOHLA board member Noriyuki Yoshida thinks that humanoids are the way to go. "Humanoid robots are glamorous, and they tend to get people fired up. We hope to develop a charming robot to fulfill the dream of going to space."

Via Pink Tentacle

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May 10, 2010

JULIA Entertains, Keeps Watch


The Advanced Control Lab at National Taiwan University is working on JULIA, an interactive humanoid that works with touch screen or voice commands and has a display for home media information. She can be used as a security guard when you are at work and, when you get home, entertain you by singing and dancing.

Via Ubergizmo

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April 22, 2010

Robonaut 2 To Become Astrobot


NASA and General Motors have finally come up with a human-like bot that is worthy enough to go to the final frontier. Robonaut 2's purpose is to determine how robots can help humans in space. R2 has two arms, 4 wheels and will be sent to the International Space Station this September. With a weight of 300 lbs., NASA is also anxious to see how he will perform in zero gravity conditions.

Via NY Times

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April 13, 2010

Geminoid F Exhibits Facial Expressions

Osaka University professor Hiroshi Ishiguro, who previously made his own doppelganger, unveiled his latest project named Geminoid F. Made in the image of a woman in her 20's, she mimics the facial movements of the human sitting in front of a computer with camera and face-tracking software. She smiles, laughs and exhibits other facial expressions. With a new design, the cost has been reduced to about ¥10 million (~$110,000.) Start saving your pennies.

Via IEEE Spectrum

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April 7, 2010

SCHEMA Features Exoskeleton

Waseda University's Kobayashi Lab, the creator of ROBITA and ROBISUKE, is working on a new bot that should shed some light on perceptual computing. The 3' 11" tall SCHEMA (Multiparty Oriented Communication Robot) features 8 DOFs in its head and 6 DOF in its arms and will be the lab's first robot to have an exoskeleton.

Via Plastic Pals

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April 6, 2010

Geoff Peterson Debuts on Late Late Show

Mythbusters' Grant Imahara agreed to build a robot sidekick for Craig Ferguson. If you are a fan of the Late Late Show, then you already know that Craig is into puppets, hobos and, ever since he got on Twitter, robot skeleton armies. The robot was named Geoff Peterson and during his debut last night seemed to say the wrong thing at the wrong time until the very last few minutes of the show. It's true that the bot is limited in what he can say, so we are thinking that this can get tired really fast. Geoff may have to be content to hang out on his own Twitter site.


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