Robotics

Domino’s Australia will soon have robots delivering pizzas

Domino’s Australia will soon have robots delivering pizzas

It is perhaps a science fiction dream come true. Or a pizza delivery boy's (or girl's) worst nightmare. Domino's Australian outfit has gotten the ball, or in this case robot, rolling on a delivery system that employs self-driving robots to get your meal to your doorstep in time, still warm, and with less costs. While governments around the world are still on the fence about self-driving cars, Brisbane's local authorities have already approved this meal-serving robot whose cuteness is sure to be a magnet for people of good and bad will.

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Panasonic is building Ninja exoskeletons and Aliens-style Power Loaders

Panasonic is building Ninja exoskeletons and Aliens-style Power Loaders

Panasonic is working on a full body exoskeleton which will give workers super-strength, the company has said today, building on its "Ninja" power assist suits. The PLN-01 wearables, developed by Panasonic division Activelink, and their AWN-03 counterparts, are intended to help industrial workers lift heavy objects without destroying their backs in the process.

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Google X will cut Boston Dynamics robots loose

Google X will cut Boston Dynamics robots loose

Google parent Alphabet is exploring a sale of Boston Dynamics, the specialist creator of creepy robot dogs and humanoids, after failing to come up with a way to turn a profit from the high-tech team. The company, which has worked on various robotics projects with DARPA, the US military, and numerous other firms, was acquired by Google in late 2013, after former exec Andy Rubin decided the company would be a perfect fit for his robot ambitions, a project dubbed Replicant.

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iRobot Braava Jet is a robot maid for your bathroom floor

iRobot Braava Jet is a robot maid for your bathroom floor

iRobot's Roomba robots already suck: now they can spit, too. The iRobot Braava Jet isn't rude, though, it's actually intended for bathroom and kitchen floors, as well as rooms with wood and laminate surfaces. Cheaper than its vacuum siblings, it's also considerably smaller so that it can dart behind your toilet. I cornered it in a bathroom to see how it worked.

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Jibo vs Echo will be decided with developers’ hearts

Jibo vs Echo will be decided with developers’ hearts

Forget Alexa, when it comes to digital companionship Jibo is aiming to make a faint Echo of Amazon's connected speaker. Handiwork of a team of roboticists, animators, and speech recognition specialists, Jibo raised millions with its promise of social robotics: now, the "family robot" is ready to embrace whatever new abilities third-party coders can come up with. I caught up with Jonathan Ross, Head of SDK Development at Jibo, for an exclusive preview of the new developer toolkit ahead of its public demonstration at SXSW this weekend.

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Sony unveils KOOV robotics kit for education

Sony unveils KOOV robotics kit for education

Never before has robotics taken a more mainstream role in the world, from Amazon's busy workers to drones to self-driving cars. Thanks to advancements not only in technology but also in the science of artificial intelligence and machine learning, the promise, and to some the threat, of robots are near fulfillment. Suffice it to say, robotics will be a one of the main topics in science and technology education in the years to come. Which is why Sony is announcing KOOV, an educational kit for robotics and programming for primary schools.

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Researchers create robotic octopus skin that’s soft, stretchy, and changes colors

Researchers create robotic octopus skin that’s soft, stretchy, and changes colors

A team of scientists at Cornell University have developed a skin-like material that is not only soft, flexible, and capable of stretching to six times its original size, but features robotics such as color-changing displays and pressure sensitivity. If you've had a fear of robot octopuses before now, your nightmares are coming true. With cephalopods as their inspiration, the engineers imagine the technology could not only lead to soft, adaptable robots, but to stretching and folding display screens.

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Neato Botvac Connected: smartwatch controlled

Neato Botvac Connected: smartwatch controlled

Apple Watch and Android Wear users will be able to control the likes of the Neato Botvac Connected as its updated this year. The Neato robot will work very similar to what you've come to expect from a robot vacuum - cleaning your home automatically. What it will also do is respond to your commands - from your wrist. This action will work via the same Wi-Fi network as the vacuum robot - hopefully keeping your cleaning activities private as it does so.

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Humans might be too trusting of robots in emergencies

Humans might be too trusting of robots in emergencies

The stereotype around robots is that most humans are afraid of them, either because they'll take over jobs or take over the world. In an almost ironic twist of fate, however, it seems that humans might actually trust this metal creatures in case of an emergency. In fact, they might actually trust them too much, even when all experience and reason tells them not to. That was was the bizarre finding that a Georgia Tech research arrived at when testing human and robot interaction in emergency situations, believe to be the first ever study of its kind.

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DJI is now offering drone insurance to cover crash repairs

DJI is now offering drone insurance to cover crash repairs

Personal drones are quickly becoming one of the hottest high-tech toys around the world, and with more drones in the air, that means increased chances of accidents. That's why DJI, one of the leading drone manufacturers — and the makers of some of the most expensive models — has just announced its own protection plan that will cover the cost of repairs in the event of an accident, even when it's caused by the operator.

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Volvo’s drone-guided garbage-lifting robot is now a working prototype

Volvo’s drone-guided garbage-lifting robot is now a working prototype

First announced back in September, Volvo's concept of a small, autonomous robot that picks up and empties trash bins now has a working prototype. The project is dubbed "Roary," for Robot-based Autonomous Refuse handling, and also involves waste recycling company Renova, as well as universities in Sweden and the US.

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Mercedes is ditching some robots in favor of human staff

Mercedes is ditching some robots in favor of human staff

Our dystopian all-robot future just got hit with a minor setback: Mercedes-Benz is ditching some of its robot workers in favor of humans, citing the human ability to move faster and perform a wider array of tasks. The reason largely revolves around Mercedes’ increased array of customization options — there are so many different individualization options at the moment that robots aren’t able to deal with them all. Humans, the auto maker says, are saving the company money.

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