Morgan Spurlock’s “Inside Man” series kicks off its third season on CNN this Thursday (January 22nd) with an in-depth exploration of how robotics will change our daily lives, starting with an exciting race track adventure in a driver-less sports car.
The new ROBOTIS PLAY600 PETs robot kit includes a cute bird that only took a few minutes to assemble, but provided lots of fun and excitement for our two dogs.
The kit allows very young learners to get involved in building simple robots even before they are old enough to start learning how to program. ROBOTIS expects to release the kit for sale in February.
Total assembly time for this robot was about 10 minutes. The kit includes all the parts and plans for two other, slightly more complex, animal type robots that move.
DARPA unveiled the latest version of the ATLAS robot redesigned by Boston Dynamics. Although it positioned the modifications as an ‘upgrade’, over 75% of the robot has changed for the better.
Wakamaru, the mutil-function service robot developed by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries close to a decade ago has never seemed to gain much traction or use outside of research labs and universities. While Wakamaru is extremely cute, most observers agreed that it didn’t really address a compelling customer need, especially at it’s USD$14,000 price point.
A tweet earlier today by @rani_chocobreak seems to provide visual confirmation that Wakamaru may have reached the end of its rope. According to the tweet, there are quite a few Wakamaru robots stored in the garbage collection area at an unnamed Japanese university.
大学のゴミ捨て場に凄まじいものが捨ててあった pic.twitter.com/slCOpZzuRZ— らに (@rani_chocobreak) June 23, 2014
No specifics yet, but NTV has posted a promotional banner on their website advertising the 2014 Real Robot Battle competition. Last years event, which resulted in a 2+ hour television special, turned out to be extremely popular, and the company is hoping to repeat that success and perhaps even turn it into an annual event.
Assuming that the rules haven’t changed from 2013, anywhere from six to eight teams will field massive robots over 2 meters tall to battle it out in the ring. Each robot utilizes a wheeled mobility platform of their own design, but from the knees up the competitors are quasi-humanoid and powerful enough to inflict significant damage on each other.
This should give you an idea of how big these robots really are:
Here’s the online version of the Yomiuri Shimbun article reporting on the Japanese government strategy to boost low-cost robots - http://headlines.yahoo.co.jp/hl?a=20140615-00050113-yom-bus_all.
Basically the information is the same as we reported in the previous post, though there are a few more specifics. The article also mentions a proposed robot competition, tentatively named “Robot Olympics”, the government plans to stage in conjunction with the Tokyo Olympics and ParaOlympics in 2020. Needless to say the IOC will make them come up with a different name as it has in the past with other robot events.