April 1, 2010

Virtobot Performs Autopsies

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Virtobot can take a virtual autopsy without chopping into the body. Used at Bern's Institute of Forensic Medicine, it projects a light on the body and records contours with a 3D HD camera. It also can image skin texture and can look for bullets, stab wounds and other gruesome evidence.

Via Swiss National Science Foundation

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March 29, 2010

Ibn Sina Is First Android to Fly Emirates Airlines

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We recently heard from Dr. Nikolaos Mavridis who caught us up on news of Ibn Sina (aka Avicenna) and FaceBots, the Interactive Robots and Media Lab's projects. They have certainly been busy. Ibn Sina went on display at the GITEX in the Middle East amd IEHE in Saudi Arabia. It turns out that the Arabic-speaking bot also became the first android to fly first class on Emirates Airlines. IRML's FaceBots were demoed at the Techriti in India. Check out their site to read about their other recent activities.

(Thanks, Dr. Mavridis)

Via IRML

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March 24, 2010

Power Tube Fish Can Dive, Resurface

The Faculty of Engineering at Osaka City University have a robotic fish they call the "Power Tube." Fueled by a single solid-polymer cell, the 10cm fishbot can swim, dive and head for the surface by utilizing a frontal joint. While it started off with motor power, its creators switched to a magnet system to use less power and have plans to allow it to swim for 3 days on a single charge. The scientists plan on using the fish for rescue work and maritime research.

Via CrunchGear

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March 22, 2010

Cody Learns to Handle Hardware

Georgia Tech's Healthcare Robotics Lab is developing a humanoid that can open doors, cabinets and drawers. Controllable by joystick or physical interaction, Cody has vision via stereo cameras, a laser range finder and Meka Robotics' 7 DOF arms. His body sits on a Segway RMP 50 Omni mobile base with Mecanum wheels. While he only has hooks for hands so far, Meka Robotics is working on one with 3 fingers and a thumb.

Via Plastic Pals

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March 18, 2010

Kompai Assists the Elderly

Robosoft's Kompai is a service bot that understands instructions and responds to its owner. The robot is intended for the elderly and disabled and can navigate autonomously. He takes notes, keeps a shopping list, plays music, video conferences and is a verbal calendar for his keeper. He made his formal debut at the ILTCI Conference in New Orleans last week.

Via Robosoft

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Osaka U Gives Birth to M3-Neony and Synchy

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The M3-Neony was born in the same lab as the CB2 baby robot, but at least this one is a bit easier on the eyes. He weighs about the same as his real counterpart and has an integrated computer, 22 motors, 90 tactile sensors and 2 cameras. Teach him to walk and talk and his autonomous self will wander around searching for truth from a robotic point of view.

M3-Synchy is another robot from Osaka University that was created to study humans communicating with multiple robots non-verbally. The M3 in each one stands for "Man Made Man."

Via Get Robo

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March 16, 2010

MeBot Gets Involved

MIT has been working on MeBot, a semi-autonomous robotic avatar that duplicates the user's facial expressions. Arms are controlled by a second set of controls. The team found that people were more involved when the telebot was more involved. That pretty much seems like a no brainer to us.

Via MIT

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March 11, 2010

ABE Missing in Underwater Chilean Expedition

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The Autonomous Benthic Explorer was lost on March 5 during an expedition off the coast of Chile. The 15 year-old underwater ABE was being used to map the sea bed and collect samples for the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution. While its disappearance had nothing to do with the recent earthquake, the researchers believe that one of its glass sphere may have imploded. This means that ABE could not return to the water's surface from its 222nd, and now probably final, dive.

Via Cape Cod Times

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March 9, 2010

WENDY Built for Studying Human-Roman Interaction

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WENDY (Waseda ENgineering Designed sYmbiont) was built in 1998 to study human-robot interaction. She could crack open eggs, slice veggies and pick up small objects. At a height of 4'9" and a weight of 355 lbs., she has stereo CCD cams for visual recognition and runs on WENDY-OS and RHICS (Robot Human Interactive Communication System) move by imitating human beings. We think it's time she took on a more contemporary look.

Via Waseda

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March 8, 2010

CCC Seeks Director of Robotics

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Now is your chance to make your name in the field of robotics. Calhoun Community College in Alabama is developing a $71 million R & D park and they are looking for a director. To qualify, you need a Master's degree, 5 year's worth of management experience and expertise in robotics. Check out the requirements at Calhoun's site before March 11.

Via News Courier

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