t h e o d d r o b o t d o t c o m

Thursday, July 09, 2009

hexapod ant with amazing motion!

Wow it's been a while but here's something hot my friend pointed me too- amazing movements on the torso and head, with independent tracking no less!

Thursday, August 07, 2008

new microsoft robotics developer studio

Microsoft Robotics Developer Studio 2008 CTP July has just been released and it contains new samples, tutorials, enhanced simulation features and new Visual Studio wizards. The big deal is it supports the development of remote NXT apps as well as Microsoft's Silverlight, which is something I have yet to experiment with.

Version: 2.0.831.0
Download Size: 92.2 MB - 425.4 MB

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

u-command wall-e toy

Here's a nice review of the U-Command Wall-E RC toy ($50-80 US) . I just ordered 2 of these, one for fun and one for the autopsy table. I'll post pics soon.

Thursday, June 05, 2008

maars go to war

According to Wired.com the U.S. Military is getting a fleet of the MAARS (Modular Advanced Armed Robotic System) "kill-bots" from Foster-Miller Robotics. MAARS would be sent into battle with the ability to kill, which has never happened as of yet. However, aerial Predator drones equipped with missiles are another case, and have been used in combat since the first Gulf War. To clarify, MAARS aren't autonomous robots at all, they're remotely controlled via human operator severeral miles away much like the Predator.

Still pretty creepy if you ask me. Read the whole story here.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

tri-bot: new robosapien!

Holy Crap! RobotsRule posted a hands-on review of the new WowWee robot, the Robosapien Tri-Bot. It has a cool look, drives on omni-wheels and has tilt-motion control via its remote. Tri-Bot is expected to ship this summer, the pricetag: $99.

Friday, May 16, 2008

asimo the conductor

NPR has reported on Asimo's recent stint as conductor of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra with Yo-Yo Ma. While entertaining, the event was also meant to draw attention to the importance of music education. Here's a snippet:

David Everson, who plays the French horn, said that while ASIMO's timing was impeccable, like a metronome, something clearly was missing."This thing doesn't have any eyes," Everson said. "You can't see its eyes. They can't convey any kind of emotions to you other than … It's standing up there, it's not moving forward, it's not moving back. It's not making little small gestures or giving anybody any cues."

Check out the video

animatronic wall-e street promo

Spotted in LA, coutesy of Slashfilm.com!

Thursday, May 15, 2008

swashbot 3!

I-Wei has done it again. Way too cool new version of his three-legged RC creature using a swash plate and four servos. This time he brings the personality back by fabricating a shell and legs out of a material called Shape Lock.

Check out all three Swashbots on CrabFu.com.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

i-sobot bear plays guitar

Another great YouTube gem. A very cool mod of the i-sobot dressed up in a bear costume and running a choreographed air guitar routine. Not a bad start!

wall-e robot demo!

Found on YouTube, the first video of the Disney toy in action! Due in stores this June, it will sell for under $200 according to our pal Lem at Robots-Dreams who first got the news last month (see post below).

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

wall-e robot toy this June!

ZOMG! Disney and WowWee are developing a programmable Wall-E robot for retail...

The "Ultimate WALL·E robotic toy" is due out in June of 08, and has 10 motors for lifelike movement. With voice activation and a follow-me mode, WALL·E can follow the sound of a human voice and detect someone entering a room. The robot has a variety of sensors that let it hear, navigate, and detect obstacles. It will sell for $189.99.

They are also developing the iDance Wall·E dancing boombox which has USB ports, can play MP3 music, and has an audio in-jack that works with any iPod or MP3 player. It will sell for $24.99. They're also working with WowWee to make a flying Tinkerbell toy. The whole story can be found here at Venturebeat who broke the news from Maker: Faire two days ago.

Friday, April 25, 2008

swashbot 2

I-Wei Huang aka Crab Fu steam roboticist (...and close personal friend) has made another three-legged robot from spare RC helicopter parts. This one has been aptly named Swashbot 2 (scroll down past Swashbot 1).

Thursday, April 24, 2008

tachikoma madness!

Tachikona madness indeedy. Lots of vids on YouTube lately, here's the good ones:

upgrades for manoi bipeds

Our friend Lem from Robots-Dreams has posted photos of a new skin/body shell for the Manoi AT01 biped that gives it a totally different look- a lot more menacing than the original skin IMHO.

Also p
osted from Robots-Dreams Lem writes about the new robotic hand for the Manoi biped developed by Kyosho. This fascinating little video shows the hand in action playing a game of Rock, Paper, Scissors.

Pretty cool indeed! Two servos control guide wires that open and close the jointed fingers and thumb. No info on the prices yet, nor what the final product will look like.

And ending on a sillier note, here's a couple of Cat-Manoi's aerobic-team-dancing to a catchy J-Pop tune. Again thanks to my hero, Lem at Robots-Dreams.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

control your robot via nintendo ds!!!

Last month some French engineering students wrote software to control a Pekee bot through their Nintendo DS wi-fi. The coolest part is they're using the MarioKart steering interface!!! I am so going to try this and post my results. You can download the .nds file posted here.

Friday, April 18, 2008

swashbot: four servos=fun

I-Wei Huang, the master of steam powered robotics- see CrabFu.com and all-around great guy (we met at Maker: Faire) has fallen off the steam-powered wagon this time, but still managed to create a very cool three-legged RC robot he is calling Swashbot.

The principle of the movement and control is based on an RC helicopter's swash plate hence the name, and is controlled via an ECCPM helicopter transmitter. All spare parts he had lying around. Read all about it at his website but first watch this awesome video...

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

segway robot mobility platform

Make Magazine posted a really intriguing video (see below) of the Segway RMP robot mobility platform that was taken today at the Robot Business 2008 event. It's capable of transporting a 400 pound payload, carrying a full grown man with ease (see video). The most interesting thing about this platform are the omnidirectional wheels allowing it to move in any direction and change directions instantaneously. Very cool to see in action. Cost estimates so far are predicted to be as high as $50,000.

Friday, April 04, 2008

spiderbot draws!

I came across a video of Mat Denton's hexapod "spiderbot" on the MAKE: Blog and had to post this immediately for your viewing pleasure. My mind is reeling at the possibilities.

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

little dog video

Hmmmm. Aparently Boston Dynamics is working on a smaller version of the Big Dog aptly named Little Dog. A CMU/DARPA locomotion program describes the project and has lots of videos. Very cool indeed!

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

robo-one 13 combat video

Lem from ROBOTS DREAMS posted this one, a truly awesome bit of combat from the 13th Robo-One Tourney in Tokyo. This is the final bout between Garoo (right) and Taekwon-V to determine the Lightweight Championship.

Monday, March 24, 2008

picaxe little 8 robot

There's a cool how-to on building a PicAxe based mini-robot for $40 at Let's Make Robots! Very cool indeed!

dartmouth micro-robots = 250 microns

The folks over at Dartmouth College have been busy making micro-robots 250 microns long and 10 microns high. Here's a snippet:

"These Micro-Robots are one tenth the thickness of human hair, about as wide as a hair, and shorter than the sharp point of a thumb tack, yet they can be remotely controlled to navigate anywhere on a surface. Integrated in this small package are a wireless power and control signal receiver, walking actuator, steering actuator, and on-board state memory."

"An interdiscplinary team of engineers and computer scientists at Dartmouth have made the world's smallest untethered mobile robots. These robots can be remote controlled to walk anywhere on a special surface. The robots move forward with an inch-worm like gait, bending one step at a time. They turn by snapping down a foot on the end of a steering arm; motion then pivots arount the fixed foot. An operator can control forward motion and turning with a sequence of commands through a wireless tramsmission that also powers the motion. "

Entire article

Here's the feature list:

- 60x250x10 micro-meter robot made of polycrystaline silicon and chromium
- Utilizes surface micromachining (MEMS) with stress engineering to produce out-of-plane curl.

- 12nm average step size.
- Operation demonstrated at 16kHz (not an intrinsic speed limit).
- Teleoperation alows motion anywhere on a plane.
- Moves on an insulated substrate with submerged interdigitated electrodes.
- Control is one-wire (plus ground) with four level logic.
- Monolithic fabrication from poly-silicon includes:
-on-board power & control signal pickup
-decoding & state memory
-locomotion & turning

- Two gaits:
-forward walking: MEMS Scratch Drive propulsion only
-turning: Propulsion and Turning Arm both deployed.

And here's some links to the videos:

Movie of robot tracing a Dartmouth "D". In this movie, the dots and text are overlays added to the video after the fact. The underlying video of the robot motion is unedited except that it is shown twice actual speed. The curved portion utilizes both turning and straight motion gaits.

Movie of robot looping corners of a square. Shown twice actual speed.

Additional video archived at
Dartmouth Technical Report 553

Entire article

Saturday, March 22, 2008

another big dog video

Boston Dynamics has released another remarkable video of their Big Dog robotic assistant/pack mule thingy. This is amazing technology that would be a great benefit to soldiers in the field as well as around the house.

Well, around my house at least.

yellow drum machine robot

Check out the Yellow Drum Machine on Let's Make Robots! A fun weekend project using a picaxe board, an SRF05 and some motors. Cost: about $120 :)

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

how-to: bristle-bot

A fun variation on the pager-motor vibrobot design using a toothbrush with directional bristles, a pager motor, and a watch battery. Looks like a lot of fun in a short amount of time, and with no soldering either!

Brought to you by the folks at Evil Mad Scientist Laboratories.