Robot Sightings: Homeless Robot, Widening Robot Gap, Crabfu Challenge, and more…

What's going on today in my crazy robot world?

  • 20:27 How many servos does it take to make a walking humanoid robot? How about 2...? tinyurl.com/69xrmv
  • 20:40 If you're going to have robot soccer games and robot battles, you have to have cheerleaders! tinyurl.com/6gtfr2
  • 22:17 The Tsukuba Real World Challenge was like the Darpa Challenge only on sidewalks with real people: tinyurl.com/tsukubachallenge
  • 05:54 The "robot gap" widens and isn't expected to slow down. tinyurl.com/robot-gap Notice that China and India don't make the top 10.
  • 06:42 Homeless UK robot will work for food (tinyurl.com/6aranj), or at least his animator will.
  • 08:40 Long before the Terminator or Gort, there was "Tik-Tok of Oz" (1914) and "The Clockwork Man" (1923) tinyurl.com/old-stories
  • 08:46 I-Wei needs a new challenge for Crabfu Steamworks, so we thought this 1865 creation would do the trick tinyurl.com/crabfu-challenge
  • 09:23 It's not Wall-E, but this mobile robotic arm built using 3 mm signboard and superglue comes close. tinyurl.com/pseudo-wall-e
  • 10:47 What do robot loving Australian media consultants do in their spare time? They make Robot Wars videos tinyurl.com/robosapien-wars
  • 11:10 The MarvelMind Grumbler robot (tinyurl.com/grumbler-alive) looked really hot, but no website or blog updates in a long, long time...
  • 13:07 See the world through the other person's eyes. A simple concept, that some never learn... tinyurl.com/6jju4v
  • 13:11 Thanks to the Wizard of Oz, the Tinman got his heart... but what happened next? tinyurl.com/2x83db
  • 19:36 Spykee and Rovio duke it out. (tinyurl.com/spykee-vs-rovio) We understand the verdict is being appealed due to cheating by one bot.
Robotically posted for Lem by LoudTwitter

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Robot Sightings: Dr. Robot tutorial, Sugiura is an Indian God, Jonas and the Stupid Robot, and more…

What's going on today in my crazy robot world?

  • 20:16 Tsukumo Robot Kingdom is open for business again after a breif shutdown. tinyurl.com/6pd6gd
  • 20:31 Indian robot builders join ROBO-ONE 14 & learn from Sugiura-san (Dynamizer): blog.acyut.com/?p=73. They call him "legendary" & "GOD".
  • 20:37 Dr. Robot teaches us how to build a sumo robot from hell: tinyurl.com/6zqggt Definitely got to buy him a new shirt.
  • 20:59 We love Star Wars, but isn't making R2D2 into a toilet paper holder going too far? tinyurl.com/54wjlu
  • 21:10 With only 256 MB this robot USB memory stick is impractical. tinyurl.com/6y9j39 So, why do I want one?
  • 21:22 Jonas challenges the BakaRobo (Stupid Robot) contest, and gets slapped in the process. tinyurl.com/5m44wc
  • 21:29 Basquash! Yet another robot movie I'll be putting on my "must-see" list. tinyurl.com/5l72xc
  • 21:45 ATR is mapping human brain patterns into visual images: tinyurl.com/5nlmbt
  • 21:48 Sangatsu Usagi's great report on the 29th Micromouse Competition: tinyurl.com/6xzhfn
  • 23:37 With auto companies in trouble, and Honda dropping F-1, will other research, like Honda's robot legs, survive? htinyurl.com/69ngeb
  • 08:51 John published a good, though troubling, study on robot hobby trends (tinyurl.com/robothobbytrends). Let's hope it's only temporary.
  • 09:05 The Vex robot system has taken off like wildfire (tinyurl.com/vex-robot-competitions). What makes it so popular with schools?
  • 09:15 For robot fans that don't want to build from scratch, PicONE released a cool micromouse robot kit. tinyurl.com/54pw94
  • 10:20 Thanks to a reminder from Martin, here's one of the best robot resources around www.robot.org.uk/ even if it doesn't have a RD link.
  • 10:25 Robert's next RoboDance version will be out next Spring and will even control the kitchen sink! tinyurl.com/robodance-specs
  • 12:12 The Kyosho MANOI robots aren't drawing much attention overseas, but here in Japan they are still hot stuff! tinyurl.com/kyosho-manoi
  • 12:26 RT Corp has an under-1 kg. humanoid robot competition scheduled for January 18th starting at 2:00 pm. www.rt-shop.jp/blog/?p=126
  • 12:49 140 year old head for a smoking robot automaton (tinyurl.com/smoking-robot-head). Pretty spooky - looks very "Stephen King" style.
  • 13:20 Daniel Ruben Rojas sent us a video of this blazingly fast line-follower robot: tinyurl.com/blazing-line-follower-robot running at 80%
Robotically posted for Lem by LoudTwitter

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Robot Lion Skinned and Autopsied

wowwee robot lion

Dedicated robot hackers are never content to leave well enough alone. They feel compelled to dissect, hack, and mod any semi-defenseless piece of electronics that will hold still long enough for them to crack it open. For them, that's when the real fun begins.

Grandlarseny37, over on the Robocommunity forums, certainly feels that way. They just posted Part 1 of a multi-part Dissection of the WowWee Alive Lion Cub. So far, the helpless cub has been skinned, had its tail pulled, and was subjected to other indignities. Part 2 is promised to be 'Coming Soon'...

Many thanks to Robert for alerting us.

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Severe Robot Induced Flashback! (Video)

wowwee robot

When we received Robert Oschler's review of the new Femisapien robot (see video below) from WowWee there was an immediate, and overwhelming sense of flashback to the 1960's, but we couldn't quite figure out why. Then, late last night, when we should have been sleeping, it suddenly hit us. Robert's passionate devotion to robots in general, and specifically to WowWee white plastic humanoids brought back memories of the late Frank Zappa (think Mothers of Invention). Robert's obsession was captured perfectly, more than 40 years in advance - probably before Robert was even born, by Zappa in his classic song "WOWIE ZOWIE".

"Wowie Zowie
Your love's a treat
Wowie Zowie
You can't be beat
Wowie Zowie, baby
You're so neat
I don't even care
If you shave your legs

Wowie Zowie, baby
You're so fine
Wowie Zowie, baby
Please be mine
Wowie Zowie
Up and down my spine
I don't even care
If you brush your teeth"
 

So, from here on out, we have dubbed Robert with the title of "Wowie Zowie", and challenge him to create an appropriate, and totally over the top, parody music video.

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Robot Girl in a Robot World (Video)

robot

Our friend Robert, over at RobotsRule.com, definitely has too much time on his hands, too much talent (way more than we do), and apparently way too much disposable income to spend on his robot addiction.

Now he's put together a creative music video parody (we think it's a parody, though he may be completely serious) that features 3 (yes, three!) WowWee Femisapiens - also known as the Sega E.M.A. Kissing Robot. Check it out below.

Warning: If you're the type of person that really dislikes puns, or word play like rhyming "plastic" with "spastic", you're going to absolutely hate this music video. For the rest of us, it's a pure delight.

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WowWee Shows Off New Robot Plans at CES

Robot


Coming close on the heels of Christmas and New Years, the annual Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas is always a great time to see what great new high tech gadgets we could have bought if we had only waited a bit.

It's also the time when companies trot out new product 'concepts' to see how the market reacts before they invest a lot of time and effort to commercialize them. Robots are no exception. For example, WowWee, the company that brought us robotic wonders like the original Robosapien, Robopet, and the disembodied singing Elvis head, is showing off a whole raft of new robot products at CES this year.

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WowWee Robot Wars (Video)

Robot


Ever wonder what would happen if a strange alien robot suddenly landed on Earth? Where would they land? And what would they do? Who would protect us? Another robot? And who would protect us from that robot?

Apparently 'days77' down in Australia wondered. And, they didn't just idly day dream about it. They actually put in a tremendous amount of work and creativity, and came up with a very well done 9+ minute video. Definitely worth watching, and sharing with friends that like robots.

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Giving Your Robosapien Some Eyes, and a Brain (Video)

Robot
We're currently doing an evaluation of some POB Technologies products, and are trying to decide which particular project would be best to demonstrate their power and capability. We have lots of different robotic platforms, some wheeled, some with tracks, and quite a number of humanoids, so the best project would involve one, or more, of our existing robots. And it should be something of practical use - something that can be applied to autonomous operation, tracking, or even just a simple fun project as long as it's not trivial or meaningless.

In going through the specs, manuals, downloads, and forums on the POB site, we ran across fairly detailed documentation showing a mash-up that uses the POB-EYE and related modules to give an original Robosapien robot vision and the ability to track objects.

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