We're only a week away from the opening ceremony for RobotWorld 2013 in Seoul, Korea and we're seeing hints that some major new initiatives will be disclosed by leading Korean robot companies like Robotis.
There's no English language information available yet, but scanning their website notations in Korean that the Robotis booth will feature "New DREAM, SMART, DARwin-Mini, and the OpenCM9.04 open platform".
Unofficial rumors going around in the robot community are that DARwin-Mini is a scaled down version of the DARwin-OP, retaining a lot of the features and functionality at a much more affordable price point, perhaps well under $1,000 for the base model. People are saying that DARwin-Mini will be open source including the hardware design, which opens the door for customers that want to 3D print their own shells and accessories. Michael Overstreet, a prolific robot blogger and big Robotis supporter, posted some early photos of the DARwin-Mini on his blog.
We'll find out at the event next week. Watch for the latest information directly from RobotWorld here on Robots Dreams.
Seems like almost every major country has popular television program featuring local talent performers, and Korea is no exception. What does make the "Korea's Got Talent" program unusual is that some of the top performers are robots operated by middle school students.
The already awesome DARwin-OP humanoid robot just got better. Robotis, the manufacturer of most of the servos, electronics, and hardware that goes into DARwin-op, announced the release of new force sensing feet.
The new feet include built-in force sensing resistors (FSR), and comes pre-assembled as a unit with hinge frames and covers. According to Robotis, swapping DARwin's existing feet with the new foot design should be very straight forward.
Jennifer, the DARwin-OP humanoid robot that's being taught to play ice hockey at the University of Manitoba is getting great press coverage, including the video segment above that ran on CBC News.
Adapting the robot to play a challenge like ice hockey is a significant challenge. Still, the way that the press portrays the robot as being "Canadian" is a bit misleading.
With humanoid robots already well on their way to challenge humans on the soccer field it was only a matter of time before they strapped on skates and took to the ice.
Naturally enough, the first group to make a serious attempt at humanoid robot ice hockey was the Autonomous Agents Laboratory at the University of Manitoba, which in addition to their robotics expertise also has been blessed by nature with an overabundance of winter weather perfect for the sport.
Robotis, one of the key R&D collaborators for the DARwIn-OP humanoid robot project, and the supplier of most of the standard hardware used for the robot, has started publishing an excellent series of basic tutorials via the ROBOTISCHANNEL on YouTube.
The first five videos in the basic tutorial series cover everything, step by step, from how to power up and power down the robot, through color calibration.