How to Build a Humanoid Robot (Video)

Kondo humanoid robot khr-3hv
Ever wonder what it takes to build one of the advanced humanoid robot kits like a Kondo KHR-3HV? It turns out to be not all that hard, though the process does require considerable concentration, persistence, and patience.

Total assembly time is typically around 8-10 hours, though you will want to split it up into a few separate work sessions, unless you're really turned on by the thrill of searching for tiny, tiny screws that fell off the table and into the carpet pile.

Thanks to the dedication, and thoughtfulness, of Daniel Stephens, you can peek over his shoulder while he goes through the entire KHR-3HV robot construction and testing process from start to successful finish. Don't worry, Daniel has been thoughtful enough to compress the 10 hour robot build into a much more manageable 6 minute video clip below.


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Bre Pettis – Makerbot Guru – Immortalized in ABS Plastic (Video)

Bre Pettis Makerbot robot creatorThe Makerbot has created a huge revolution in creativity by making it possible for makers everywhere to cheaply and easily print 3D objects of their own design.

The person (or personality) most commonly associated with the Makerbot and the whole 3D printing groundswell, is Bre Pettis, well known for his quirky mannerisms, glasses, hair, and random-access lightening bolts of creativity. He often leaves you a bit breathless with unexpected comments that seem to come totally out of the blue,

So, it wasn't surprising that Michael Curry, a leading 3D printing evangelist with tons of creative talent, saw fit to immortalize Bre in ABS plastic. And, like the Reanimator, Curry gave the Pettis clone the ability to speak.


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Ponoko announces Personal Factory™ 5 Making Platform


David ten Have, the CEO and founder of Ponoko, just announced Personal Factory 5 including Personal Factory App Gateway that enables use of the new AutoDesk 123D free 3D design software for makers.

According to the official Ponoko blog:

"From day one, we envisioned Ponoko creating a platform that would change the rules on who was able to make things and the way things were made.

This goal is being achieved by connecting a network of people who want to design and customize their own products with a network of digital manufacturing technologies that can make products on-demand closest to the point of consumption."

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AutoDesk Gets on the 3D Maker Bandwagon

Screen shot 2011 05 19 at 10 51 33 PM

You can tell when a grassroots movement has really caught on when big companies start to roll out their own initiatives and products following the lead of pioneers that have already broken trails into the new frontier.

That definitely seems to be the case with AutoDesk's new 123D software platform. The free Windows based software product is specifically targeted at "makers". According to the AutoDesk 123D news weblog:

"With Autodesk 123D, anyone can explore, learn and create highly precise 3D models. Makers can bring ideas to reality by combining powerful digital design with services for creating physical objects. From both within the application and through the 123D website, individuals can discover and download content to start, complete or visualize a project, and then access for-purchase personal fabrication services through Autodesk 123D partners. Makers can also purchase pre-fabricated products to explore 3D printing or assemble models from 2D laser cut materials like cardboard—the first of a variety of custom fabrication options coming soon to Autodesk123D."

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Robot Laser Tag – Thunderbolt by Yoshihiro Shibata (Video)


Yoshihiro Shibata believes that robot and motion design is an art, and he aspires to be one of the top artists in his chosen field.

He should know. For the past few years he worked for Kondo Robot in Tokyo where he was the product manager for the KHR-2HV and KHR-3HV humanoid robots as well as the frame design for the Kyosho MANOI AT-01 robot.

His skill is very evident in the video above. Taken by a head mounted camera, the video is surprisingly stable showing how smooth and reliably the robots balance and movements are, even while playing a fast game of Blaser robot laser tag.

Shibata recently spun off on his own and is designing robots and taking on projects via his new company named LightFoot. He's also actively involved in staging robot events and is the technical director for the Robot Japan competitions.

He also did pretty well at RoboGames 2011 in California last month:

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Robot Event Calendar Updated (Video)

Updated the Robots Dreams Robot Event Calendar highlighting upcoming events through July of this year. Most of the events are located here in Japan, but some, like RoboCup 2011 are as far afield as Istanbul. We've also included a few events that are craft/hack/design related since they often feature robots and technologies that apply directly to robot design and fabrication.

Our personal favorite is the two day Design Festa gathering at the Big Sight convention center that attracts over 100,000 people and has to be seen to be believed. Here's a look at the Spring Design Festa 2010 event to give you a feel for why we like it so much:

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