Robots are all after our jobs! If you're not convinced entirely yet, then Japan's latest technological marvel just might. Japanese scientists have revealed to the public a new kind of eerily human-looking android that will be announcing news, arriving in real-time, in near pitch-perfect and fluent Japanese.
Research and entertainment robot NAO is getting faster, smarter, and strong: in fact, it's a good job he only comes up to your knees, as otherwise we'd be worried. NAO EVOLUTION, the handiwork of Softbank acquisition Aldeberan, takes the hobby-bot and boosts its awareness of the surrounding environment - including its emotion-recognizing abilities - as well as how well it can interact with it, thanks to things like defter hands.
SoftBank plans to sell an emotion-sensing humanoid robot, Pepper, in Japan next year, putting the sensor-toting 'bot into customer services duties in stores from this week. Expected to go on sale from February 2015, Pepper can track the emotions of the humans around it through their expressions and voice tones, and then react accordingly depending on what apps and cloud-data are available.
A group of MIT researchers have set out to make you a bit more robotic, adding a few extra limbs along the way. Their design offers up robotic arms, which sit on your body like a backpack. The goal is not to take the place of your arms, or replace limbs in any way. Instead, the concept is to give yourself a helping hand with heavy lifting and the like.
Robotics has seen many substantial developments over the past few years, not the least of which is due to DARPA efforts. One of the newest ones is from the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology, more commonly called KAIST, that has developed a sprinting robot dubbed the Raptor.
If having your own robot to do your bidding sounds enticing, it’s fast becoming a reality. Instead of waiting around for someone to engineer a companion robot, Intel is letting you do it yourself. At home. The company says that by the time 2015 is here, we’ll have a 3D printable robot model we can assemble at home.
DARPA robots are perhaps the most notable robotic machines in present times, hinting at a future where humans use mechanical creations to accomplish all sorts of tasks -- including killing. Lethal autonomous robots have been a subject of debate since their first conception, and could end up banned before the first one is ever made.
Robotics have come a long way, but there are still struggles with regard to movement. Natural human movement is hard to mimic, but a team of Engineers in Switzerland have created a robotic arm that can catch items thrown at it. By learning about the object being tossed, and anticipating movement, the arm can actively pursue targets and snag them out of mid-air.
Dean Kamen's robotic prosthetic limb, the DEKA Arm System, has been granted FDA approval, with the DARPA-sponsored project controlled by electrical signals from sensors where it meets the wearer's limb. Dubbed "Luke" - a reference to Luke Skywalker from the Star Wars universe - the arm is a huge step forward from existing mechanical prosthetics, allowing for more detailed uses like turning keys and pulling zippers.