August 28, 2008

Talking Robotic Jesus Kicks Butt

Well, now. This robotic Jesus created by "jacques couscous" moves, does Kung-Fu and, in his own juvenile tones admits, "I can kick some serious butt" and "Are ya feeling lucky? Well, are ya?" Learn how to make your own and his companion/foe Bald Baby Buddha Buddy on instructables. While this project involves using a box cutter, a successful mash-up should protect you from your dashboard, no matter who is out there.

Via instructables

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August 27, 2008

ARoS Chastizes Co-Worker

Industrial robots will have to learn to get along with human co-workers as shown in this clip from the University of Minho, Portugal. Notice that the ARoS berates its helpmate when the human makes a mistake. After a second one, the bot again complains. We hope that at the very least they will make them with kinder tones in the future, say like Majel Barrett-Roddenberry, the voice behind the Star Trek's 'puter.

Via New Scientist

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August 19, 2008

Robot Controlled by Rat Brain

Calling Dr. Frankenstein! A robotic rat controlled by a bit of real rat brain has be made by British scientists at the University of Reading, led by Professor Kevin Warwick. The robot is linked wirelessly to 300,000 neurons kept in a cabinet. When the ratbot receives signals, it turns left or right. They are now trying to teach it to get used to its surroundings to prove that memories are retained in nerve connections.

Warwick previously experimented with a silicon chip transponder that was implanted in his forearm in 1998. He then managed to operate computers, doors, lights, and heaters without moving. He even wrote a book on the subject, "I, Cyborg."

Via New Scientist Tech at "I, Cyborg."

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August 15, 2008

Must Have Robot: Elmo Live

Elmo Live is finally available for pre-order and as such qualifies as our Must Have Robot of the week. At a size of 5.5 x 11 x 15" and a weight of 2.2 lbs., he bobs his head, waves his arms, stands, sits, and crosses his legs. He can be activated by tickling (of course) or a squeeze on his tummy, foot, nose or back. He sings, tells jokes and stories, and plays games. This is a must have that we predict will be the hottest toy this holiday season. He comes with a MSRP of $65.99 and will arrive October 14.

Via Elmo Live

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August 14, 2008

Rovio Now Available for Pre-Order

Wowwee's Rovio is now available for pre-order. The spybot will patrol your house with routes that you pre-program with its software. You can even accomplish this with a mobile phone or any web connection. With the simple instruction "go to," it will check to see if there are any intruders, make sure that pets and teens aren't up to any mischief, or make sure you turned off the coffee maker. Run by a micro-GPS system, if the robotic dude falls down, it gets back up all by itself. And when its batteries run down, it will head back to its dock. Expect the Rovio's debut sometime this month with a $299.99 price.

(Thanks, Robert)

Via Robots Rule

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August 12, 2008

Limbo On, Hexabot!

Partially developed by students at Nanyang Polytechnic Institute, the 6-legged spiderbot can climb stairs, squeeze into narrow places and navigate on harsh terrain. The Hexabot will be able to avoid obstacles and help rescue trapped victims or sweep minefields. When it lifts three legs it can really hustle. The video also shows it doing the limbo, most helpful when taking an exotic island cruise.

Via EE Times

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August 7, 2008

Tai-robot-kun to Hit the Water

If it looks like sushi, and swims like sushi, but doesn't taste like sushi, then it is probably the University of Kitakyushu's Tai-robot-kun. The sea bream (red snapper) robofish weighs 15.4 lbs. and is covered in silicone. It propels itself silently like its real-life counterpart, at least till something larger comes around and chomps down on it.

Via Pink Tentacle

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August 6, 2008

How Did He Do That?

We find this toy even more clever than the Bow-Shooting Boy. This Chinese automaton was built in 1920 by Phalibois. The 5' tall robotic magician appears to make a doll to appear and reappear. It was auctioned off late last year by Skinner Inc. and, according to "wexrex" sold for about $70,000.00.

Via wexrex

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August 5, 2008

BeRobot - World's Smallest?

Taiwan's GeStream BeRobot makes a claim to being the smallest humanoid robot on the planet, even smaller than the I-SOBOT. Standing only 15cm tall, it can perform push-ups, (although we don't know why it would want to,) kick mini-footballs, and gets back up after falling down. Run by remote control, it has an AI-Mg alloy skeleton, is programmable and, as the site says, is "much funny." Look for the 2008 models in September.

Via GeStream

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August 4, 2008

Toyota to Release Winglet PRTs

Toyota has unveiled their line of personal transportation robots they call Winglets. All three models are about 18 x 10" and the smallest is foldable and weighs a mere 22 lbs. Looking at the video, we think we need a bit of balance to master the Type S, while the M and L PTRs appear to be more of the Segway ilk. We still find them environmentally correct modes of transportation and would love to give them a spin.

Via crave

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