NXTBot to Bristlebot

Here we have some kind of "bristlebot". That's what the author says about the creation he made out of his NXT-bot. This retard is coming back to the roots of vibrobotics and really it looks good at it. A mindsweeping misuse of the NXT that enforces the physical laws of gravity to - in a way - walk.

Tags: bristlebot, homebew, nxt, misuse
Mar_04:2008 .020200 Comments(0)

Nice Robotic-Blog with Texts and Tutorials

I found a nice little Robotic Blog, filed under aurorian.blogspot.com. It features nice text on robotics background, just like this compact overview on swarm intelligence algorithms and use cases. There are also some very nice tutorials on how to to build your own little robotic experiments or components, using beam-style. For example this one shows us how to build a photopopper, using a solar engine.

I especially like that picture of the roller-skating bot. Unfortunately there's no tutorial how to build that one.

Tags: do-it-yourself, lo-tech, homebrew, swarm, beam, tutorial
Mar_03:2008 .020200 Comments(2)

Learning from Ants - A Talk from Deborah Gordon

I'll leave you into the weekend with some cool infos upon ants - how they live, how they work and how they function. The biologist Deborah Gordon researches after the live of ants. She gave a talk at TED talks and we just embed the video. Keep on watching, there is everything explained.


Tags: swarm, ant, outside, research
Mar_01:2008 .020200 Comments(0)

The ReadyBot keeps your Kitchen clean!

ReadyBot doing work

Don't we all have this silent wish? Coming home and someone did the cleanup and the laundry? Finally there is a homebrew-project, that take some steps to get closer to this vision. ReadyBot was established by senior AI-developers from the Silicon Valley and they are totally dedicated to building a kitchen robot. They see, that this project could bring a change into the field of robotics. In search of the kitchen robot, they do not use specialized parts, but only things that are mass produced and available in stores. The ReadyBot is really not at the high sophisticated level in terms of a pofessional level. Instead it can be rebuild in small labs or at home "quite easily" by anyone. At least that's the goal of the ReadyBot. Building homebrew is a fundamental part of their self-understanding.

The ReadyBot project also claims responsibility for a social change.

Many countries, especially Japan and parts of Europe, face a significant demographic challenge. Because of changes in birthrates, there are not enough new workers entering the market. Over the next few decades, tens of millions of robots, capable of performing menial and repetitive work, will be required to keep those economies afloat and competitive.

While governments and academics have poured effort into research and made great progress, to this day there is still no "general purpose" or mass-production

The robot comes out of its place, when no one is in the kitchen, so that he can do his work undisturbed. Isn't it a good feeling to have such a robot doing autonomous work if you're away?

If the future of home robotics will be so cute and clumsy... then everything will be okay. Cleaning take some time, but when you're not at home, well, than speed doesn't matter. Just linger a little at the ReadyBot webpage webpage. The FAQ is great.

Tags: home, homebrew, helper, indie-labs
Feb_29:2008 .020200 Comments(0)

Reactions to the Hypercube

Benoit Espinola wrote an answer to our Hypercube posting. He analyzes, whether the Hypercube would be possible. A real hypercube would not be possible, because of te 4th dimension. The results of his analysis:

What we see (in the hypercube animation) is a hypercube that remains still in our three dimensions and that is manipulated in the 4th dimension. To have that resultant movement, we have to be able to manipulate the 4th dimension of the hypercube, if we suppose that we reach to build a hypercube, we would be able to manipulate the 4th dimension... To do so, we need hyper dimensional engines. Really complicated in my eyes...

Far more essential is the closing statement of his article.

But what forbids us to inspire ourselves with the hypercube transformations to find new ways to move? Nearly nothing, except the physical constraints and costs.

Tags: hypecube, contraints, theory
Feb_28:2008 .020200 Comments(2)

Blubber Bots - Intelligent Creatures in the Landscape

The Blubber Bots are semi-autonomous creatures, that float through the air in search of light and cellphone signals. They are do-it-yourself robotic inflatables, balloons filled helium that graze the landscape and are an evolution of the "ALAV", the Autonomous Light Air Vessels.

Concept Sketch of the Blubber Bot

Together with the Hoggets Roam, they form the beginning of the series of Transitional Species.

Transitional Species is a group of networked objects that interact with their environment, people and each other. Being semi-domesticated in nature they curiously become your companions.

Keep on following there. That special touch of species in-between landscape and technology, inhabitant and ecology, and autonomous robots and roaming wanderers is highly adorable.

Check out that according flickr-groups for the Blubber and the Hoggets.

Tags: outside, play, floating, species, architecture, do-it-yourself, homebrew, indie-labs
Feb_27:2008 .020200 Comments(0)

Tesseract / Hypercube - Mechanical Possible?

The hypercube or tesseract is a mathematical structure, that maps a 4-dimensional cube into our third dimension. Hard to explain this in few words, but you can read the book about the flatlands, view the film or listen to Carl Sagans explanation the 4th dimension.

Here we have a video. I'm not sure if this structure could be accordingly used in the physical world, i.e. to build new ways of mobility devices, to transport or just to have cool visual effects.

Hypercube / Tesseract structure

Remarkable is also, that this Hypercube most often also appears in selfmade-religious context or the so called "Church of the SubGenius", a subcultural religion based in the USA. The SubGenious somehow found acceptance in American pop-culture and has some very self-ironic elements and a pop-post-apocalyptic aesthetic. It looks to me like a techno-hippie movement. I am sure, that you already know things, that are somehow like that. Just think of Robert Anton Wilson or other appearances of the SubGenius iconography.

SubGenius commercial from 1991

Day of the SubGenius

Tags: body, biomechanics, walk, math, culture
Feb_26:2008 .020200 Comments(3)

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