Asratec, a wholly owned subsidiary of SoftBank held a press conference in Tokyo announcing V-SIDO, an innovative operating system for robots that incorporates functionality to protect the robot and humans while making development easier for robot designers. They also demonstrated the ASRA C1 reference model humanoid robot.
Dates for the 35th Annual All Japan Micromouse Robot Contest were announced by the Japanese New Technology Foundation. The contest, which includes Micromouse Half-size, Micromouse Classic, and Robotrace categories, will be held November 21st-23rd, 2014 at the Atsugi Campus of Tokyo Polytechnic University.
Contest entries will be accepted from September 1st-30th. Admission to view the contest is open to the public with no admission charge.
Two of the most interesting, and most affordable, humanoid robots that have come on the scene recently are the Darwin MINI (Robotis) and RAPIRO. Both of the new robots have strong/cute personalities and are open-source designs encouraging users to engage, experiment, and learn by doing. They’re extremely user friendly.
Yoshihiro Shibata, a top Japanese humanoid robot designer currently working with Sugiura Machine Design Office, was kind enough to share these side-by-side photos comparing Darwin Mini and Rapiro-
Deagostini Japan and Mitsui Sumitomo bank are introducing a Robi branded VISA credit card in Japan next month. The introductory campaign includes Robi branded items including a mini Robi figure and Quo prepaid cards featuring an original Robi design.
Needless to say, the promotion is only open to Japan residents.
Nippon TV is gearing up for the Real Robot Battle program, scheduled for broadcast here in Japan on Friday, December 13th starting at 7:00 pm. The humanoid robot competitors have been designed, and will be piloted by several of the top ROBO-ONE and university teams on the scene.
To generate more interest and enthusiasm, two of the life sized robots are currently displayed in Nippon TV’s 2nd floor lobby along with the championship belt. It’s hard to get a feel for the robots size from the photo. They are actually around 2 meters tall and weigh over 200 Kg (440 lbs).