Latest version of LittleDog from CLMC and Boston Dynamics (video)

LittleDog from Boston Dynamics and CLMC at USC doing an obstacle courseOur last look BigDog from at Boston Dynamics, most agreed that its movements were beginning to look eerily life-like. The latest version of LittleDog, shown in the video below, is nothing short of breathtaking. Six teams were provided with the LittleDog chassis and funding; this version contains AI software created by the Computational Learning and Motor Control Lab at USC (specific project webpage). See the video after the jump.

Humanoid robot Motoman assembles a camera

Motoman-sda10 looking sharpThis robot, named Motoman-SDA10, is a versatile humanoid industrial robot currently on display at the International Next-Generation Robot Fair. He’s intended to serve both at the factory or at a workplace alongside humans. It’s an industrial robot so I couldn’t find any indication of vision, hearing or other sensors to make it more aware of its environment, so we can expect it to work in safe distance from humans until one of us provides that Change He Needs.

Read on for videos and specs.

Cockroach inspired robot from CWRU’s biorobotics lab (fantastic)

This fantastic robot is the third in a series of robots designed at Case Western Reserve University’s biorobotics lab. Make sure you have a look at their site which contains more information and pictures.

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Reaper UAV Frequently Used Against Enemy Targets

The MQ-9 Reaper flying over AfghanistanThe UK controlled Skynet 5C satellite was launched from the Kourou spaceport in French Guiana yesterday. It’s purpose is to allow various parts of the military to increase data transmission rates and pass two 2.5 times the current amount of data between command centers worldwide. One of the things utilizing these comlinks is the Reaper unmanned aerial vehicle, which reportedly has- and is being used in combat against enemy targets.

Boston Dynamics Unveil BigDog Progress

BigDogs playing
Boston Dynamics released a new video of BigDog the other day. The improvements since last year’s demo are absolutely incredible. BigDog can now maneuver up and down rugged hills, balance on ice and jump. I’m not an avid fan of exclamation marks, but wow! In my honest opinion this quadruped is the most life-like robot made to date. Must-see video after the jump.

Absolut Adopts Machines & Artificial Creativity

Art from the Absolut Choir installation
By all likelihood you’ve heard of the vodka company’s Absolut campaigns. Recently they launched Absolut Machines, a new campaign that’ll be running for a year and centers around two artificial creativity projects; AI systems that compose music on accompanying mechanical instruments and can be watched & interacted with via live video feeds.

Modular Snake Robots From CMU’s Biorobotics Lab [Video]

CMUs Biorobotics Lab Modsnake shining its headlight into the cameraSnake robots are always incredible to watch, and CMUs modular snake robots are no exception. They are incredibly versatile – being able to crawl, climb, swim and scale flights of stars. The video shows all — and I was really impressed when it crawled up and down the leg of one of its creator … fast!

Machine Interpretes Your Dreams, Robot Enacts Them [Art]

Sleep Waking is an art project that uses EEG and EKG to record brainwaves and heart activity of a sleeping person and feeds them into a humanoid robot (a Kondo KHR-2HV). The robot turns the data into an interpretive dance. In short, the robot dances your dreams. In addition, rapid eye movement is used to control the head of the robot, so if the sleeper’s eye looks left – the robots head looks left.

Monkey Brain Makes Robot Walk

Last year I had the pleasure of seeing Dr. Miguel A. L. Nicolelis do a lecture at Reykjavik University about his research on mind-controlled robotics. His previous efforts have put him in the spotlight more than once which include enabling a monkey to control a robotic arm with his mind. Now Nicolelis and his team has pushed the bar by enabling a monkey to move robotic legs in a walking pattern.

Robot Videos From CES 2008

As usual, the Consumer Electronics Show 2008 has brought an onslaught of hot gadgets. Here are a few videos of new robotic products expected to hit the market this year. A special star goes to WowWee for their Rovio telepresence bot which sounds and looks truly fantastic.

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