A group comprised of members of Carnegie Mellon University, The Robotics Institute, and the Advanced Robotics lab at IIT, have been kicking around a full size million dollar humanoid robot. Don’t worry, this robot is fully equipped to brace itself for the fall, much in the same way a human would. Upon having a force acting upon the robot, leading it into what would be a catastrophic fall, it will hold out its hands to brace itself against a wall. It even accurately pushes itself back into proper standing position! Check out the video. It’s impressive work, but you might feel bad for the robot.
Hot on the heels of the announcement of the US series BattleBots getting a reboot, BBC has announced that Robot Wars is coming back to BBC2! After a decade of real robot battling blackout, 2016 is apparently a great year for robotic battle entertainment. If you want to enter your robotic creation into BattleBots fighting roster, check out the Rules and Entry page for all the details. Having just gotten the greenlight, details on entry to Robot Wars has yet to be announced. In the meantime, you can check out some savage battle footage from the original Robot Wars series.
We’ve got the littleBits Exploration Series, for your edutainment! Each littleBits Kit comes with magnetic snap together modules, designed to mitigate the danger of making a mistake, allowing for neophytes young and old to make electronics projects in a snap! No soldering, wiring or programming required. Your kids [and you!] can learn the basics of electronics, explore STEAM/STEM principles, form the foundations of critical thinking, or just have fun with blinking, buzzing creations. Kits range in price from $99.00 to $199.00.
If you’d like to learn Arduino Programming skills, which are a valuable foundation for getting involved in the realm of modern electronics, the RobotGeek Experimenter’s Kit line is for you! Each kit comes with the Geekduino and the easy to use RobotGeek Sensor Shield. With the RobotGeek System, students can dive right in to programming using Analog and Digital input modules, controlling a variety of output modules with Digital and PWM signals! With easy to follow guides, simple to assemble parts, and a large variety of modules, the RobotGeek Experimenter’s Kit line is a top notch choice for STEAM/STEM learners! We offer basic kits for new learners, and specialized kits, such as RFID, Touch, Linear Actuator, Floor Mat, and Display Kits to move you up to the next level and give your next project a swift and informed start. Kits range in price from $39.95 to $199.95.
Qian Wang, a student working in a group of researchers from the Institute of Media Innovation at Nanyang Technological University has done an excellent job making a set of motions that allows the HR-OS1 to climb up stairs! Keeping in mind the weight balance of each part, the movement looks both careful and acrobatic.
One of the major challenges, and often the first question we hear when discussing bipedal robots is, “Can it take the stairs?” and thanks to the efforts of Qian Wang, the answer is a resounding yes!
This was shared with us by Shihui Guo on the Trossen Robotics Forums, and there is an active discussion about how to improve this movement. They were kind enough to share the motion files, which can easily be added to your HR-OS1’s RME list with r3n33’s WinRME. Try it out, join the discussion, and get creative!
Want to control your hexapod or other ArbotiX-M Powered InterbotiX robot with an Android Phone or Tablet? You’re going to need the InterbotiX Bluetooth Upgrade Kit so you can get up and scuttling quickly with the BT Commander App! The BT Commander App is an easy to use solution for controlling your robot via Bluetooth. Based on the ArbotiX Commander, the control scheme should be familiar to anyone who has used one, and simple enough to learn for those who are just getting started.
Researchers at Georgia Tech have identified a way to teach robots how to fall with grace and without serious injury. In the video, the top robot uses a novel algorithm to minimize impact when the robot falls. The algorithm is not used for the robot on the bottom of the screen.
The work is important as costly robots become more common in manufacturing. The skill becomes especially important, too, as robots are sought for healthcare or domestic tasks – working near the elderly, injured, children or pets.
Our friend at NeuroRobotic Technologies has been developing an Arduino Due Shield that plays nice with everything in the InterbotiX and RobotGeek product lines (and subsequently, his PhantomX Hexapod is playing nicely with the kids)! This is a comprehensive shield that lets you connect AX, MX, and XL Dynamixel Servos! The DynamixShield is an electronics board that fits onto an Arduino Due microcontroller to give you the ability to control Dynamixel smart servos and regular servos, while also providing numerous Grove and RobotGeek connectors. Grove and RobotGeek are hardware frameworks for modular sensors and actuators. There are tons of off-the-shelf modules for these two frameworks that can be plugged into the shield with a single cable. This includes everything from GPS sensors, RFID scanners, and LCD displays that are plug-and-play ready for use with the shield. This makes it very easy to build your robots by combining modules and servos. Check out his Kickstarter, and if you want to see it happen, you can make it happen!
This project is so cool. Next Project Awesome has been working on a drink serving project known as Drinkinator. Utilizing a load of RobotGeek Pumping Stations, a Geekduino, and operated by a Raspberry Pi touch screen interface made in Kivy, this beautiful project makes for a fantastic automated party bartender. This project is well documented on Next Project Awesome’s GitHub, so if you’re looking for a project to follow, it doesn’t get much better than this. Next Project Awesome is an ambitious new youtube series that covers the use of Raspberry Pi and Arduino to make projects. They’re pretty amazing so far, and if you like what you see, you should subscribe to their channel!