Robotics

Robot monk Xian’er teaches temple visitors, chants mantras

Robot monk Xian’er teaches temple visitors, chants mantras

Longquan Temple, a Buddhist temple not too far from Beijing, is home to Xian’er, a 2ft. tall robot monk donned in a yellow robe and seeming holding a tablet in his hands. The robot is an unexpected blend of modern with the ancient, and is designed to, among other things, teach visitors some basic things about Buddhism. When not teaching, the robo-monk can chant mantras. The robot’s purpose is fairly simple — it is designed to attract visitor attention that may otherwise be dedicated to a smartphone.

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Puma made a robotic shoebox to help runners train

Puma made a robotic shoebox to help runners train

While it looks like little more than a shoebox with RC car wheels attached, Puma's BeatBot is a robot designed to help professional runners. The device was co-developed by the J. Walter Thompson ad agency, a robotics engineer, and three MIT students. It's self-driving, features a row of LED lights, two GoPro cameras, and is designed to look like, well, a Puma shoebox.

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Jibo the companion robot will start shipping in October

Jibo the companion robot will start shipping in October

Earlier this month, we heard that Jibo the companion robot had been delayed, and wouldn't be shipping out to backers this April as previously said. The company didn't know when it would start shipping, but said it would have more info by April 29. Today's the deadline, and the company has posted a video update, saying it will ship the robot to backers starting in October of this year.

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DJI Matrice 600 M600 drone offers muscles for pro filmmakers

DJI Matrice 600 M600 drone offers muscles for pro filmmakers

Drones are so common these days that almost anyone and everyone can have them, from tiny machines no bigger than your palm to hulking masses that sometimes provide a formidable target practice for birds. DJI, one of the biggest names in the drone market, has just released yet another drone. But don't let the Matrice 600's unassuming name fool you. This aerial platform easily dwarfs others in the market, not just in appearance but also in power and, of course, in price, making it a drone truly designed to help professionals showcase their creativity.

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Meet Jia Jia, China’s realistic talking robot

Meet Jia Jia, China’s realistic talking robot

Researchers from the University of Science and Technology of China on Friday revealed a realistic robot they've been working on for the past three years. Called, Jia Jia, the robot is said to be capable of human-like facial expressions, along with talking and interacting with people nearby. While its creators describe it as looking similar to a "real woman," at least it's a step up from that nightmarish home-made Scarlett Johansson robot.

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Sharp RoBoHoN walking robot phone starts shipping next month

Sharp RoBoHoN walking robot phone starts shipping next month

It’s a robot and a phone, and it’s called RoBoHon. No, it’s not a mobile phone in the shape of a robot — it’s an actual walking robotic that happens to be small enough to carry around with you while out and about, never mind how eccentric you’ll look holding a humanoid robot against your head. RoBoHoN is particularly focused on hands-free control, featuring a projector, speaker, and camera, among other things.

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Sharp robot phone will make you smile, price will make you cry

Sharp robot phone will make you smile, price will make you cry

It is probably part of a robotics fan's dream come true. Or nightmare once they see the price tag. If you thought Sharp was joking last year when it revealed the talking, walking, and even dancing RoboHon robot phone, then this latest announcement will probably prove how dead serious it is. Serious enough to slap on the equivalent of $1,800 on the non-smartphone communications and telephony device rolled into one. Yes, that will be how much it costs when RoboHon launches in Japan on May 26th.

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Softbank’s Pepper robot enrolls in Japanese high school

Softbank’s Pepper robot enrolls in Japanese high school

Softbank’s Pepper robot is leaving its customer service lifestyle and heading to school, enrolling in Japan’s Hisashi High School in the Fukushima Prefecture. This is the first time the humanoid robot is going to school, and it will, hopefully, positively impact students, inspiring them to hit the books. Pepper speaks both English and Japanese, and will be spending most of its time in English classes, showing off some of its skills and non-retail uses in the process.

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Hitachi EMIEW3 customer service robot runs on a ‘remote brain’

Hitachi EMIEW3 customer service robot runs on a ‘remote brain’

Hitachi has a new robot, and it’s poised to take on Softbank’s Pepper. The new robot is called EMIEW3, which doesn’t exactly roll off the tongue, and it’s humanoid in shape with a “remote brain” platform. The robot — or some future version of it — could be deployed in stores to seek and approach customers, offering assistance when applicable. The original version of this robot, EMIEW, was introduced in 2005.

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Strange Festo drone expels bottles right into your hand

Strange Festo drone expels bottles right into your hand

Some days you'll be working hard, and you'll get pretty thirsty. But have you ever been thirsty enough that you've thought to yourself "I wish there was a giant bubble that would expel a bottle of water right in front of me." Sure, that possibility might never have occurred to you, but prepare to have it haunt your dreams in the days to come, because it's a real thing.

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Alphabet unveils new bipedal robot that’s all legs

Alphabet unveils new bipedal robot that’s all legs

While the Google-parent company Alphabet is planning to sell its military-related robotics firm Boston Dynamics, that doesn't mean they don't have other robot projects in development. SCHAFT, which operates under Alphabet's X division (formerly known as Google X), has just unveiled a new bipedal creation in Japan at the New Economic Summit. The name is still unknown, but the bot is capable of climbing stairs, walking across uneven terrain, and even self-balancing.

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Jibo delayed as companion robot misses 2nd deadline

Jibo delayed as companion robot misses 2nd deadline

Bad news if you were holding out for robotic companion Jibo to join you this month, with news today that the crowdfunded 'bot will miss its launch window. The robot, which blends voice, object, and face recognition with advanced kinesthetics to appear more lifelike, was meant to be delivered to its earliest Indiegogo backers in either March or April this year.

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