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Monthly Archives: June 2015

Will Your Job Be Taken By a Robot?

Do you operate a snow plow for a living? Look out! The YukiTaro robot not only shovels snow, it converts it into a short, melting wall. (Photo credit: of Research and Development, Inc.)

Ever wondered how likely it is that your job will be stolen by a robot? Researchers at the University of Oxford studied the issue and produced a thoughtful paper entitiled, “The Future of Employment: How Susceptible Are Jobs to Computerisation?” Now National Public Radio has created …

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Wood Pulp Batteries in Development

Researchers have created a battery from tree pulp that can be squished much like a sponge. (Photo credit: KTH.)

Robots could one day be powered by tree pulp. Researchers at KTH Royal Institute of Technology and Stanford University have developed a method for making elastic high-capacity batteries using nanocellulose from broken down from tree fibres. The battery can be squished, much like foam, and therefore …

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Print Your Own Two-Layer Circuit Boards with the Voltera V-One

Print your own circuit boards with the Voltera V-One. (Photo credit: Voltera Inc.)

Print prototype circuit boards in minutes with the Voltera V-One. This handy device can print both conductive and insulating ink to a minimum trace width of 8 mil, to create two-layer boards based on your very own Gerber files. The V-One is also great for solder …

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Mini Solderless Breadboard

Try out a new sensor on your robot without committing to the setup, using a Mini Solderless Breadboard. (Photo credit: Adafruit.)

Need to test something minor on your robot but don’t want to commit it to solder? This mini solderless breadboard is perfect! Smaller than a U.S. quarter, this little breadboard will fit just about anywhere. It only weighs 2 grams, too! The board has four rows …

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Easily Measure Weight With Your Arduino

A new breakout board from Sparkfun allows you to easily integrate a load cell into your next electronics project. The board uses an HC711 IC, and uses a two wire interface (clock and data) for communication. Just connect the amplifier to a microcontroller, such as an …

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MIT’s Origami Robot

MIT's self-folding robot can walk and swim on top of fluids. (Photo credit: Christine Daniloff/MIT)

MIT researchers have built origami robots. When heated, the paper thin, previously flat robots folds up into a predetermined shape that allows them to move along a solid surface or float on top of a liquid and move around like a little boat. Each robot weighs …

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Robotic Broccoli Harvesting

(Photo credit: GC.)

Robots could be used to help harvest broccoli, according to researchers in the UK. The team is testing whether 3D cameras can be used to identify and select when broccoli is ready for harvesting. This key step in the development of a fully automatic robotic harvesting …

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Get a Feel For Electronics with Squishy Circuits

Instructions for this and other Squishy Circuits are available on the company's Website. (Photo credit: Squishy Circuits.)

If you’re eager to explore basic electronics in an out-of-the-box way and have an artistic bent, you’ll likely love a Squishy Circuits Kit. The concept behind the kit is simple: create one dough that conducts electricity and one dough that does not, then use the doughs …

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Gaining Insight on Robotic Vision From Insects

University of Adelaide Ph.D. student Zahra Bagheri and supervisor Professor Benjamin Cazzolato with a vision system that uses algorithms based on insect vision. (Photo credit: University of Adelaide.)

A new research project seeks to improve robot vision by applying findings from research on insect and human sight. As a part of their work, the researchers built a virtual reality simulation, in which an artificial intelligence system pursued an object. The findings were recently published …

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Robot Planning Algorithm Tested in Minecraft Model

"The whole of Minecraft is what we refer to as 'A.I. complete.' If you can do all of Minecraft you could solve anything. That's pretty far off, but there are lots of interesting research objectives along the way," says Brown researcher Stefanie Tellex. (Photo credit: Mike Cohea/Brown University.)

A new algorithm could help robots do a better job planning for the complexities of the real world. Interestingly, the code was tested in a video game. Robots often have a tough time planning their actions, in part because they don’t intutively know how to focus …

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Sparkfun Inventor’s Kit for Redbot

The completed robot! (Photo credit: Sparkfun.)

The Sparkfun Inventor’s Kit for Redbot is designed for the total novice. According to the Sparkfun Website, all you need is the desire to learn! The Kit comes with everything you need to build nine circuits for the robot that will teach you about various aspects …

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South Korean Robot Wins First Prize in DARPA Robotics Challenge

DRC-Hubo gets a grip on the valve. (Photo credit: DARPA.)

The DARPA Robotics Challenge Finals were recently held in Pomona, California. The contest, which tests a robot’s skills at assisting humans in natural disaster scenarios, is extremely difficult. Robot are judged on their ability to perform a variety of tasks, including walking across rubble, open doors, …

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Simplify Sensor Hookup with the Grove Base Shield

Hook up your Arduino Uno project faster with the Grove Base Shield. (Photo credit: Seeed Studios.)

Want an easier way to hook sensors up to an Arduino: check out Seed Studio‘s Grove products. Grove components let builders skip the tedious breadboarding process! Just plug the Grove Base Shield on top of your Arduino Uno. It’s easy to find a home for any …

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