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COTSBots!

What do you do when you want to do research with robots, but don't have the budget for decently powered robots? COTSBots! [more inside]
posted by BillW on May 28, 2012 - 7 comments

OMG Bunnies.

"Usavich" (Season One video) is a series of 90-second CGI cartoons made for MTV Japan about two Russian rabbits. It begins in a Soviet-era prison where Kirenenko*, a mob boss sentenced to death is sharing a cell with Putin (yes, that's his name), a common worker imprisoned on a trumped-up charge and counting the days until his release. And then it gets weird. (contains extreme cartoon violence, scatological gags, Russian stereotypes, transvestite chickens and shoe fetishes) [more inside]
posted by oneswellfoop on May 28, 2012 - 10 comments

Paralyzed Woman Controls Robotic Arm With Her Mind

For the first time since she was paralyzed by a stroke 15 years ago, a woman in the BrainGate2 clinical trial served herself a drink of coffee ... with a brain-controlled robot arm (with heartwarming video)
posted by crayz on May 16, 2012 - 8 comments

The Second Android Coming of Philip K. Dick

To understand the reasoning behind the android and why this particular science fiction author, above others, was chosen... [more inside]
posted by dubold on May 14, 2012 - 11 comments

The uncanniest of valleys

“In this project, an attempt is made to approach the creation of sensitive and subtle expression by a humanoid robot using [an artificial butt.]”
posted by secretdark on May 11, 2012 - 60 comments

From Days of Long Ago...

"From days of long ago... from uncharted regions of the universe, comes a legend: the legend of Voltron, Defender of the Universe!" [more inside]
posted by zarq on Apr 2, 2012 - 30 comments

Pop! ... Pop!

Boston Dynamics is getting close to mastering quadrupedal motion with Big Dog and Cheetah (previously). And are working on bipedal motion with Petman (previously), but how about a robot that is able to leap (up to the top of) tall buildings in a single bound? Sand Flea! [more inside]
posted by codacorolla on Mar 28, 2012 - 51 comments

Robot Animals of the United States Government

First there was the doomed cyborg Acoustic Kitty. Then the vaguely ominous man-outrunning robot cheetah. Now we have super stealth Robojelly, a robotic jellyfish.
posted by sunnichka on Mar 22, 2012 - 17 comments

Thundercats, Hooo!

From the creators of Petman and BigDog, a Cheetah is born! (SLYT)
posted by lemuring on Mar 5, 2012 - 55 comments

Terminator Babies

Animatronic baby mechanism for anonymous job (SL Nightmare Fuel)
posted by dirigibleman on Jan 21, 2012 - 33 comments

Look up in the sky, it's Rube Goldborg

Here is one of the longer anime robot transformation sequences out there, clocking in at about 3 minutes and 28 seconds. SLYT [more inside]
posted by JHarris on Dec 8, 2011 - 43 comments

Sun Microsystems?

The House of the Rising Sun, on old Computer Equipment
posted by rusty on Dec 2, 2011 - 27 comments

From the comments: "Someone pass me the crowbar please."

Soft robotics are inspired by animals which don't have hard internal skeletons, like squid, worms, and starfish. Developed at Harvard, with funding from DARPA, this particular soft robot, "not only walks, it knows several different gaits and can deflate to stuff itself through tiny little gaps." Another design here, and another (also), and another. In addition to movement, soft robotics can also be used for grip. More information about the Harvard lab is available here (with a student describing the research here).
posted by codacorolla on Nov 29, 2011 - 26 comments

Your future soldier is almost ready

Boston Dynamics, home of the amazing bigdog robot (previously, SLYT), has released an impressive video of their new bipedal robot PETMAN walking, squatting and doing pushups.
posted by FrereKhan on Nov 1, 2011 - 32 comments

"Wanna be a member, wanna be a member?"

Bimbo the Dog never had it easy. First, he was forcefully initiated into a sadistic, subterranean, won't-take-no-for an-answer, candle-headed cabal. Then he was punched in the face by his own creation (among others), and summarily run out of town, where he was taunted by tombstones and other undead entities. *all YouTube links* [more inside]
posted by obscurator on Oct 30, 2011 - 8 comments

A Twonky is something that you do not know what it is.

One of the more terrifying monsters to haunt the human imagination: The Twonky (yt). [more inside]
posted by kuujjuarapik on Oct 8, 2011 - 19 comments

Walt Disney's "The Black Hole"

To paraphrase a character in the film, The Black Hole walks "a tightrope;" if not between "genius" and "insanity," then certainly between "genius" and "banality". If you're looking at this movie as a Manichean exercise between darkness and light, then you can -- for at least a few hours -- entertain the "genius" part of that equation.
posted by Trurl on Sep 25, 2011 - 106 comments

"Everyone has pain. It's your job to find it."

Start a home business, get rich quick, win financial freedom! If you watch late-night TV, you've heard it all before. But what's the story behind these slick pitchmen and their dubious schemes? Enter The Salty Droid, your ornery metal guide to the corrupt underworld of scam-marketing scum. This charmingly acerbic bot (owned and operated by mild-mannered Chicago dog-lover Jason Michael Jones [inter-view, long talk + transcript]) is a valiant crusader against the vile con-men who bankrupt the elderly and the desperate with beautiful lies. Exposed so far: A shadowy "Syndicate" of frauduct-pushing personality cults polluting the media with blogspam and woo-woo talking points. Boiler rooms in the Utah desert where telemarketers farm credit from easy targets with cunning, probing scripts [PDF]. Powerful politicians bought wholesale. Believers left to die in fraudulent new-age vision quests. It's a soul-crushing beat, enough to make one feel like a regular catcher-bot in the digital rye. But somebody's got to do it -- preferably someone with plasma nunchucks and titanium skin.
posted by Rhaomi on Aug 31, 2011 - 47 comments

Keepon dancing

Will a slightly pared down version of the My Keepon, a fuzzy yellow dancing robot, be this year's holiday hit? (For extra added schmoopy, a portion of the proceeds will go to autism research.) Pretty fly for an AI.
posted by Soliloquy on Aug 19, 2011 - 20 comments

Random Robot Generator

With hundreds of millions of variations, Robohash is among the leading robot-based hashing tools on the web.
posted by Laminda on Aug 8, 2011 - 14 comments

Welcome...welcome.

This is Zombotron. You can scavenge for items and kill the undead in this Flash game. Your less-advanced mechanical brethren may even shoot you on site, as they are only programmed to detect motion. Welcome to Zombotron.
posted by Smart Dalek on Jul 14, 2011 - 29 comments

Don-8r: the alternative to Chuggers

21-year-old inventor Tim Pryde has come up with an alternative to the much-circumnavigated "chuggers" (chuggers previously) ‒ solicitous-but-impossibly-cute robot "Don-8r". [more inside]
posted by greenish on Jun 24, 2011 - 25 comments

Big Kids Will Love Them Too

"Cubelets is a robot construction kit; by combining sensor, logic and actuator blocks, young kids can create simple reconfigurable robots that exhibit surprisingly complex behavior." Watch the Cubelets Engineering Prototypes demo (1.01) on Vimeo. [more inside]
posted by bwg on Jun 24, 2011 - 14 comments

"-No tension contact!"

Claude Shannon and Marvin Minsky collaborated to create the concept of The Ultimate Machine, a device capable of shutting itself off after activation. Out of the numerous and often transparent homages to the invention, a new variant has emerged, with more rigorous defenses. [via]
posted by Smart Dalek on May 11, 2011 - 15 comments

The da Vinci Robot Plays "Operation" Board Game

Surgical Robot plays "Operation" [SLYT]
posted by anateus on May 6, 2011 - 31 comments

Robot Elephant!

(notes on) biology, a short stop-motion animation (5.39) by ornana films, features a robot elephant. You have to wait a bit, but it's worth it. Stuff gets good at about 2.25.
posted by bwg on Apr 25, 2011 - 8 comments

I sing the body electric

Hello, my name is FRIDA. I am a concept, developed as part of the Rosetta project, en EU-funded initiative to support the development of robots. Take a good look at me. I can be very romantic.
posted by anigbrowl on Apr 14, 2011 - 21 comments

Blinky Just Wants To Be Your Friend!

"My name is Blinky, and I just want to be your friend!" A well-crafted short film by Ruairi Robinson (slightly gory CGI ending may be NSFW).
posted by killdevil on Mar 20, 2011 - 25 comments

A Robot That Kills

Heather Knight is currently conducting her doctoral research at Carnegie Mellon's Robotics Institute and running Marilyn Monrobot Labs in NYC, which creates socially intelligent robot performances and sensor-based electronic art. One of Heather's robots, Data, is an aspiring stand-up comic. He also has a twitter page. Heather and Data were recently featured on Marc Maron's WTF podcast. In addition to working on her robots, Heather also collaborated on the OK GO Rube Goldberg video.
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates on Mar 17, 2011 - 17 comments

Meet the Geminoid DK.

Meet the Geminoid DK, who looks exactly like Associate Professor Henrik Scharfe of Aalborg University in Denmark. If you're wondering why on Earth someone would want an exact robotic double of themselves, besides being TOTALLY AND COMPLETELY AWESOME, the Geminoid is going to be used for researching "emotional affordances" in human-robot interaction, the novel notion of "blended presence," as well as cultural differences (from different continents) in the perception of robots.
posted by amro on Mar 7, 2011 - 32 comments

Braindriver

Braindriver is a car that allows you to steer, accelerate and decelerate with nothing more than the faint electrical signals generated by the brain.
posted by jason's_planet on Mar 5, 2011 - 13 comments

Automated robots look less threatening in seal suits

"A ball-throwing robot with visual feedback" sounds dull, so let's hide the robot arm in a plush seal suit! Now that ball-throwing robot with stereo vision looks like a seal playing basketball! Just ignore the robotic hand coming out of it's mouth, and the un-seal-like movements. (via)
posted by filthy light thief on Mar 2, 2011 - 32 comments

Not all mimes suck.

Shields and Yarnell: innovators in the field of robotic movement, exploring the Uncanny Valley through nationwide public exhibits during the 1970's and 80's. They also took requests for other animals, from other animals, performing with someone named Animal.Lorene Yarnell died in July 2010.
posted by not_on_display on Feb 14, 2011 - 19 comments

Feed me! Feeeeed Me.

What does the future of electricity hold? Microbial Fuel Cells? How about a carnivorous clock?
posted by The Whelk on Feb 10, 2011 - 19 comments

I, for one, welcome our new hamster robot overlords.

Princess the Hamster gets a robot walking suit. (SLYT)
posted by loquacious on Feb 7, 2011 - 90 comments

Robo Rainbow

Robo-rainbow. SLV. That is all.
posted by Ahab on Feb 2, 2011 - 23 comments

Wampa

Wampa at the gas station
posted by puny human on Jan 29, 2011 - 24 comments

You Are A Big Winner!

You'd better get the robot those letters so he can be awesome. One of the most technically challenging banner games JayIsGames has developed, Robot Wants Jig is a metroid-ish platformer in which you acquire upgrades by collecting the letters of JAYISGAMES and unlock new areas of the map. A map of the game world is below in case you get hopelessly lost. [more inside]
posted by tehloki on Dec 13, 2010 - 17 comments

Here on the Battlefield

...and on the battlefield it ends.
posted by lauratheexplorer on Nov 20, 2010 - 20 comments

Jaimie Mantzel's Giant Robot Project

Jaimie Mantzel has a dream: The Giant Spider Robot Project. First he needed some infrastructure; a Palacial Megadome (with trampoline floor) in the woods, his own hand made road, a Banana Building, and of course his own lumber mill. He also recently started the Adventure Builders Club for anyone else who likes building stuff. Whole lots more videos in his channel. via
posted by MetaMonkey on Nov 14, 2010 - 17 comments

One small step for a robot

One small step for a robot, one giant leap for robot-kind... but not yet. The Robonaut R2 (sic) will have to wait at least another three weeks, as the final mission of Space Shuttle Discovery is delayed.
posted by philipy on Nov 5, 2010 - 13 comments

We all love robot pancakes.

You've seen them here before: serving ice cream, pole-socking, with teddy bear heads, climbing trees, and sporting hands. But now robots are truly Metafilteranean, because they want to know: Who here likes pancakes? [more inside]
posted by jocelmeow on Oct 31, 2010 - 15 comments

Don't worry, he's just a prototype

"The boy insisted for months that he wanted to be a robot for Halloween. His sister was a robot when she was his age. We looked at various robot images on the computer and he was most intrigued by Robocop. After I showed him the trailer, there was no convincing him otherwise. He was going to be Robocop."
posted by Katemonkey on Oct 29, 2010 - 59 comments

Greetings from the Uncanny Valley!

Meet Actroid-F, the "world's first true Android", unveiled this month at a laboratory fair at Japan's National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology. Designed to be used as an observer in hospitals to gauge patient reactions, the robot can replicate surprisingly subtle facial movements. Previously.
posted by Dragonness on Oct 28, 2010 - 58 comments

"You can't break up with me, I've got Hand."

Get a grip on this. "It turns out that opposable thumbs aren't critical for getting a good grip. Neither are fingers. Scientists have created a robotic arm that can do everything from serve drinks to draw pictures even though it has no digits. Their robotic hand, which they describe online today in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, is a thin rubber sack filled with coffee grains or small glass spheres. When this hand comes in contact with an object, a small pipe sucks air from the sack, causing it to contract and mold to the object's shape. The contraction is small—a mere 1% change in volume–but was enough to grab most objects the researchers tested." Inside the balloon hand. The robotic mitt. Via: Sciencemag.org
posted by Fizz on Oct 26, 2010 - 49 comments

Harlan Ellison is responsible for the fourth game.

At first, robot wanted kitty. Then, robot wanted puppy. Next, robot wanted fishy. And now, robot wants ice cream.
posted by prefpara on Oct 3, 2010 - 16 comments

"I'm doing this for my pride. I'm doing it for the principle of the matter. I'm also doing it because it's going to be awesome to have a robot pony bicycle when this all ends."

"The Home Owner's Association at my building has been leaving me notes asking me to clean up my parking spaces in the garage...Apparently, the rules say that only bicycles are allowed to be stored in these spaces. In the spaces I have: 2 bicycles...and one mechanical pony..." [more inside]
posted by overeducated_alligator on Sep 27, 2010 - 77 comments

Give up, Robot!

Give up, Robot! a flash game
posted by boo_radley on Sep 9, 2010 - 20 comments

Tree Climbing Snake Robot

Modular Snake Robot Climbs a Tree. [Via]
posted by homunculus on Sep 5, 2010 - 54 comments

BEAR Robot Overview

BEAR Robot Overview. (SLYT).
posted by nathancaswell on Sep 3, 2010 - 14 comments

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