RoboGames 2007 – Humanoid Robot Rumble (Video)

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Normally after all the competitions are said and done, and the builders aren't worried about some minor damage keeping them from participating in the next round, we have a rumble event - the humanoid equivalent of Kind of the Hill or Last Robot Standing.

At RoboGames 2007 there were finally enough active competitors that we had the first rumble, then a little while later everyone decided they just hadn't had enough fun, so we had a second hilarious rumble.

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RoboGames 2007 – Stair Climbing (Video)

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At first glance the challenge looks deceptively simple. Have your robot climb a short set of stairs, take a few more steps, then descend a similar set of stairs. In real life it quickly turns into a major challenge - one that might drive you over the edge trying.

At RoboGames 2007 in San Francisco last week, many of the competitors attempted the stair climbing challenge, and several of them achieved very respectable results, as you can see from the video below.

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One Reason Why You Definitely Want To Come To RoboGames (Video)

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The general impression and common public perception has been that hobby level humanoid robotics outside of Japan lags way behind the bots created by Japanese builders here. All of that is about to change dramatically at the RoboGames event, held this coming weekend at Fort Mason in San Francisco.

By the time that the dust clears, and the events wrap up, on Sunday, there will be no possible doubt that some of the custom humanoid designs built in the States, basically from scratch, are just as competitive, interesting, and exciting as their Japanese counterparts.

Think we're exaggerating? Well, take a look at the video clip below featuring just two of the awesome humanoids that will be competing this weekend - then book your tickets for the premier robot event of the year.

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Robot Image Recognition Couples Robonova-1 With Java (Video)

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Here's the challenge: Have your humanoid robot identify an object - in this case a red block, walk over to it, bend over and pick up the block.

That's the first experiment that 'JavaRN' on the RoboSavvy Robot Forum wanted to try with his brand new Robonova-1 robot (see video below). For most of us - ourselves included - just getting a kit like the Robonova assembled and working correctly is enough of a challenge, but JavaRN went way, way beyond that - way beyond.

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Jumping Robots! Matt Bauer's New Robonova Dual Knee Joint Kit (Video)

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Matt Bauer, the creator of Rook's Pawn, has earned a lot of visibility and respect in the Robonova-1 humanoid robot community for his creative hardware modification kits - like his best selling robot gripper design - and software like MECH Puppeteer - a very user friendly GUI front end for the Hitec robot.

Today Matt officially took the wraps off a totally new mod kit for the Robonova robot - a dual knee joint kit that gives the robot surprising flexibility, effectively doubles the speed of moves involving the knee, and even enable the robot to do some pretty impressive jumps.


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Mystery Robonova Transformer Robot In Singapore? (Video)

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Sharp-eyed Humanoido, from the RoboSavvy robot forum, discovered a very interesting set of recent videos (included below) showing what appears to be a Robonova-1 robot that's been modified to act like a Transformer - complete with a set of wheels to drive around.

In addition to the Transformer mods, the mystery robot, which appears to have been hacked in Singapore by "TC Tan", features a head mounted video camera, and some really slick Kung Fu moves.


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Robot Week In Japan!

ROBO-ONE kicks off next Saturday morning, and early indications are that tickets for the premier robot event may sell out long before the doors open. The latest measure of the extreme interest in personal humanoid robots here is a content rich, multiple page, robot special section unveiled this week at the top of the Yahoo Japan website. 

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Takeshi Enters Robot Baseball Spring Training? (Video)

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Some people buy a humanoid robot kit, do the assembly, play around with it for a few days, then it gets put on the shelf. Others, like DirtyRoboto, see it as a challenge and long term learning experience. They realize that the initial assembly is only the beginning of the journey.

DirtyRoboto, his nickname on the Robosavvy Robot Forums, seems to be making real progress, and enjoying every minute of it. A few weeks ago he added some custom designed grippers to "Takeshi", his Robonova-1 humanoid robot, and now he apparently wants his robot to become a major league baseball pitcher!

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