July 21, 2008

Tilted Twister Solves Rubik's Cube

There have been other robots that can solve the Rubik's Cube, and now Hans Anderson has programmed his Lego Mindstorms NXT to do the same. The Tilted Twister has a set of sensors that detects when holds the puzzle, then calculates the moves. Using algorithms, the Twister can solve the cube in an average of 60 moves in about 6 minutes. While it may not be as fast as Rubot II, it certainly will beat most humans. Being the decent guy that he is, Anderson is sharing his instructions and plans with anyone who wants them.

Via Tilted Twister

Sheila Franklin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

July 15, 2008

KT-X Picks Itself Up

KumoTek Robotics and Vstone Corporation have teamed to create the KumoTek-X (KT-X.) This bipedal bot can stand, walk, run, and somersault. It can be programmed to pick itself up after falling. At 13" tall, KT-X has 17 servo-activated joints, 75 pre-programmed motions, and 60MHz HV processor with 512kB ROM / 64kB RAM. The company claims it has extremely user-friendly programming for robotic virgins. The price? A whopping $1,199.99.

Via Audio Cubes

Sheila Franklin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

July 11, 2008

Robotic Middle Manager Haunts Australia

This video is downright eerie. Performance artist Momoyo Torimitsu let her robotic Middle Manager loose on a busy Australian intersection. According to the artist, "The battery-powered robot is supposed to symbolize the Asian economic crash and Japan's rigid 'salaryman' culture."

Yeah. We wonder why she didn't let it loose in Toyko.

Via Diagonal View

Sheila Franklin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

July 10, 2008

Sega i-spin Dances

Sega Toys recently released their cheapy version of the Rolly. Their egg-shaped dancing bot responds to your tunes coming out of its speaker. The i-spin can attach to audio players and will also repond to human voices. At a size of 95 x 80 x 160mm, it runs on 3 AAA batteries, and comes in blue or pink at a price of ¥5,250 ($52.00.) We found one of their commercials on YouTube, which is almost as cheesy as the i-spin itself.

Via Sega (translated)

Sheila Franklin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

July 9, 2008

Toyota Partner Robots Play Tunes

Competing with Sony's ASIMO, no doubt, are Toyota's Partner Robots, which can play the violin, trumpet, tuba, trombone, French horn, and percussion. Released late last year, the bots occasionally gather for impromptu concerts. The company is working on their dexterity as well as coordination. Once perfected, they are hoping that they will become household robots. We think they should get together with ASIMO and go on tour.

Via Pink Tentacle.

Sheila Franklin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

July 7, 2008

San Jose Art Museum Features a Summer of Robots

If you are fortunate enough to be in the San Jose area this summer, you should try to catch the Robots: Evolution of a Cultural Icon exhibit at their Musuem of Art. Running until October 19, the show features the development of robot iconography in the last 50 years. There are sculptures, paintings, photographs, digital media, and installations created by over 20 artists. Included in the exhibit are "Video Labels" by various artists, including this one from Clayton Bailey, who explains where he gets his materials and why he is into robots. Sit through the whole video and you can see some of his incredible creations.

Via San Jose Museum of Art

Sheila Franklin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

July 4, 2008

Mr. Asahi, the Bartender With Class

Wouldn't it be nice to go into a bar, or in this case pub, stroll up to the counter and the Asahi Bartender pours you a brewski? No asking for tips, no cutting you off when you reach your limit, and someone you can talk to who will listen, no matter how much you whine. Although the brewery is located in Japan, Mr. Asahi, a combination of robotics and animatronics, speaks in a delightful English accent and can not only open bottles, but deliver a pint on tap. We say Cheers! to the bot.

Via channel flip

Sheila Franklin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

Must Have Robot: Mr. Clock Radio

Okay, he is loud, he is obnoxious, but what better way to get up in the a.m. than with Mr. Clock Radio? He plays Revelry, yells at you to wake up, and announces the time. The Geewiz bot features an analog AM/FM tuner, an MP3 player, multiple wake-up settings, and a light and motion sensor on its LCD backlit display. We found Mr. CR online at Amazon for $65.95.

Via Geewiz at Mr. Clock Radio.

Sheila Franklin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

July 3, 2008

Machine Science, Affordable Robotics Kits

Machine Science is a site that features robot kits that would turn any budding Science Fair entrant into a winner. Choose between a Starter Kit, a Mobile Robot Space Kit, a Text Messenger Kit, and others. They carry free project guides, tools, and miscellaneous parts with prices starting at about $40.00. They also hold annual Sumo Robot Wrestling Tournaments. We figure this video will provide a bit of an incentive.

Via Machine Science

Sheila Franklin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

July 2, 2008

Readybot Hires Roomba

Ya gotta love the Readybot. It was devised by a team of engineers and designers in Silicon Valley who arranged a contest (a la DARPA Urban challenge) to build a kitchen cleaning bot. The result is the Readybot, who has been around for awhile, but has recently decided it needs help. So the team added a Roomba to pick up the little stuff. The group is hoping to expand the growing domestic robotics industry with its publicity. We thought we wanted one of these robots before, now we are convinced. Now if they would just teach Readybot to clean the cat box.

Via Readybot Home Page

Sheila Franklin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

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