New Books for the Robot Library

Had several extra minutes between our afternoon meeting and the upcoming dinner session, so we stopped by the Kinokuniya Bookstore next to Takashimaya in Shinjuku.

As usual, the staff had no idea about where the robot books might be hiding, still they were extremely polite and helpful.

The saving grace was that I could quickly bring up the Ohmsha Robocon magazine page on my iPhone so that they could check the store database.



Just a few minutes later I was the proud owner of the latest issue plus a "Mook" on the Japan Robot Olympiad that I wasn't aware of before.

Mook, by the way, is the Japanese coined word for a hybrid book/magazine that usually (but not always) has the meaty content and depth of a book combined with the larger format, gloss, and eye candy of a specialty magazine.

-- Posted using the Robots Dreams iPhone.

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Robot Dog Gains Attention and Recognition in Japan

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We were really glad to hear that the new HPI G-Dog robot canine landed the cover of the next ROBOCON magazine. ROBOCON is, without a doubt, the leading Japanese robot focused periodical. So when the magazine's editors pick a robot to grace the cover, it means that they like it a lot, and think it will do quite well.

The issue featuring the G-Dog will hit stores on August 18th, and includes a four page article covering the robots design, features, and appeal. We got some hands on time with the robot dog at RoboGames 2008 (see video), and were definitely impressed. HPI hasn't disclosed their release schedule for the US market yet, but we're sure it will be a winner when they do.

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New Japanese Humanoid Robot Book

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Iwaki-san and Tanaka-san have put together a new humanoid robot book that we know is destined to join our rapidly growing library, and workshop. The book, titled "Custom Robot Perfect Book", has us drooling just from the cover photos alone. Add in the fact that Iwaki-san has designed and built some totally awesome robots, including Five - one of the ROBO-ONE 13 finalists, and Tanaka-san is famous for his robot suit/shell designs....

Well, hopefully we'll be able to track down a copy of the new book in Akihabara this weekend. If we're lucky enough to snare one you'll hear about it here with all the great and gory details.


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ROBO-ONE 13: Tim Hornyak's Perspective on the ROBO-ONE Phenomena (Video)


Tim Hornyak is a well known expert on the history and development of Japanese robots, as well as the author of "Loving the Machine", a best selling book that explores the 'art and science of Japanese robots"

We had the great pleasure of spending the afternoon with Tim at ROBO-ONE 13 on Sunday. Of course, we couldn't let the opportunity for an interview (see video below) escape, so we grabbed our camera, put Tim in front of one of the ROBO-ONE banners (just like the Oscars!) and kept feeding him straight lines...

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Takara/Tomy i-SOBOT Humanoid Robot Featured in DIME Magazine

Robot
The current issue of DIME magazine, a popular market trend watching publication here in Japan, has a short feature article on the soon to be released Omnibot 2007 i-SOBOT humanoid robot from Takara/Tomy.

Billed as the 'World's Smallest', the tiny robot packs a lot of power and technology into its 16.5 cm/350 gram body. According to one of the taglines in the DIME article, the i-SOBOT features "minimal size and price" for a humanoid robot, but with all the degrees of freedom, flexibility, and personality of it's bigger robot cousins.

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