Articles about robotics

IDC shock prediction: Someone might build Skynet in next few years

Those crazy tech shamans at IDC have been sniffing the data centre cooling system exhausts again, this time breathlessly informing us that in three years "30 per cent of commercial service robotic applications" will take the form of "robot as a service". We have no idea either. IDC's "Top 10 Predictions for Worldwide Robotics …
Starship robot

R2D2 delivery robots to scurry through the streets of San Francisco

An Estonian robotics company is trialling six-wheeled delivery robots that can trundle through San Francisco delivering goods to the local population. The robots are built by Starship Technologies, a company founded in 2014 by Skype cofounders Janus Friis and Ahti Heinla, and can trundle along at 6kph (3.7mph) delivering goods …
Iain Thomson, 25 Sep 2016
ianatlas_robot_648

Sharing your work cubicle with robots may not be such a bad thing

Keep calm and carry on; artificial intelligence will not take all our jobs and achieve world domination, according to a report released by Forrester. Prominent figures including Elon Musk, co-chairman of OpenAI, and Professor Stephen Hawking have publicly warned people about how the advent of AI will cause an existential …
Katyanna Quach, 28 Jun 2016
Terminator

Robot lung probe wins licence from US authorities

Startup Auris Surgical Robots has formally joined the robotic surgery market, securing a United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) license. Don't worry, you're not going to see The Terminator looming over you as the anaesthetic takes hold: the device, from Auris Surgical Robots, is a bronchoscope. Auris doesn't have …
Still from Boston Dynamics video (Robotic mule runs through the forest)

Google tries to run from flailing robotics arm

Google's parent company Alphabet is fixing to flog its money-munching robotics arm, Boston Dynamics, which it only bought three years ago. Executives at Alphabet reckon that military robotics tech firm Boston Dynamics is unlikely to produce any real revenue in the next few years, reported Bloomberg, and as such has quietly put …

Domino's trials trundling four-wheeled pizza delivery bot

Domino's Pizza's Australian slice has decided wheeled drones trundling down footpaths are the pizza delivery mechanism of the future. The Domino's Robotic Unit sports LiDAR (light detection and ranging) object detection enabling the four-wheels Wall-E lookalike to deliver hot pizza and cold drinks without bumping into …
Darren Pauli, 18 Mar 2016
Phoenix exoskeleton

Berkeley boffins build cut-price robo-crutches, er, sci-fi exoskeleton

Exoskeletons designed to help the paralyzed to walk again are usually expensive and bulky, but a startup from University of California at Berkeley has built a lightweight version that's about half the cost of the nearest competitor. Dubbed Phoenix, the 12.25kg (27lb) exoskeleton uses low-cost motors and some high-end computing …
Iain Thomson, 3 Feb 2016
DARPA Robot Arm

Spaniards trouser DARPA robotics cash

Spanish firm Erle Robotics has secured funding from the US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) as part of the Robotics Fast Track (RFT) programme. RFT's two goals are to "enable rapid, cost-effective development of new robotics capabilities designed to respond to, and even anticipate, quickly evolving needs in …
Lester Haines, 25 Jan 2016
Microsoft Halo 2

Robotic exoskeleton market to grow 40 per cent a year until 2025

Rise of the machines The robotic exoskeleton market is set to score 39.6 per cent compound annual growth between now and 2025, emerging as a US$1.8bn industry. So says analyst outfit ABI Research, which reckons $68 million of exoskeletal kit shipped in 2014. “Lower body exoskeletons, employed as rehabilitation tools or quality of life enablers, …
Simon Sharwood, 24 Dec 2015

Samsung told to build bots who work for less than Foxconn staffers

Samsung and South Korea are taking aim at electronics manufacturing costs with a new investment in robots it's hoped will make mechanical men cheaper to operate even in jobs that currently need flexible human fingers. South Korea's Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy has found 6.75 billion won (US$14.8 million) for an …
Simon Sharwood, 19 Oct 2015
head of 50s-style robot

Toyota chucks $50m at AI car tech

Car manufacturer Toyota has begun working with researchers at Stanford and MIT in the US, having agreed to pony up $50m over the next five years to invest in robotics tech. That cash will be used to build joint research centres at the universities, the company said in a statement on Friday. Toyota has also roped in US Defense …
Kelly Fiveash, 5 Sep 2015
Robots emulate natural locomotion of water strider insects. Pic credit: Wyss Institute at Harvard University

Watch leggy ROBOT INSECT WALK on WATER before JUMPING OFF

Vid Scientists have created a leggy microrobot that mimics the actions of a water strider. They wanted to replicate the movement of the semi-aquatic insects to try to have a better understanding of how they are able to jump from watery surfaces with the same amount of force and height as a leap from rigid ground. Boffins from …
Kelly Fiveash, 1 Aug 2015

ROBOTS in sinister public-relations push ahead of coming WAR ON HUMANS

DARPA's robotics challenge concluded this weekend and $3.5m has been apportioned between the three best-performing teams. Robots that competed in the event were scored on how many of the eight tasks they managed to complete, with the amount of time taken to complete those tasks used as a tiebreaker. 23 teams participated in …
Terminators

Google’s plan for WORLD DOMINATION takes shape. And it begins with a patent

Google has been awarded a patent related to systems and methods for "allocating tasks to a plurality of robotic devices". Sprawled across its Mountain View base, the Chocolate Factory hivemind may indeed be plotting world domination, but for the moment it is at least conscious of the need to collaborate with the state in …

'Roly poly' soft, wobbly robot BANGS EXPLOSIVELY, leaps 0.5m in air

Boffins at the Institute for Chemical and Bioengineering at Zurich have developed an “untethered, jumping, roly-poly” soft robot powered by explosive gases. Soft Robotics is a field of bio-inspired robotics which derives its inspiration from animals such as starfish, worms, squid and octopuses. Avoiding the use of hard …
Beam booth at CES

CES: WELCOME YOUR ROBOT OVERLORDS... and, er, co-workers

CES 2015 Las Vegas. The strip. A blight on the American desert until you've sunk a few margaritas, ideally by 11am, when suddenly you'll find it all makes sense. Or so your humble hack has heard. If you've ever been to Sin City, especially during a mega-convention like CES 2015, you can perhaps forgive one tech biz for preferring to …
Shaun Nichols, 8 Jan 2015

Boffins train robots to pull apart LCD screens – without breaking them

Computer scientists at the University of New South Wales are teaching robots to rip apart computers for recycling. Of course, while it's easy to use a machine to disassemble something, their trick is to do it while preserving key components. Which isn't quite as easy as it sounds. The group, comprising researchers from UNSW's …

Google's Mr Roboto Andy Rubin bids sayonara to Chocolate Factory

Longtime Google exec and former Android boss Andy Rubin, who lately led the Chocolate Factory's robotics efforts, has resigned. The online giant confirmed the move to El Reg via email on Thursday. "I want to wish Andy all the best with what's next," Google CEO Larry Page said in the emailed statement. "With Android he created …
Shaun Nichols, 31 Oct 2014

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