Future steps: exoskeleton lets paralyzed snowmobiler walk again

Robotic exoskeletons are a staple of sci-fi, pointing to a future where technology can overcome serious injury and bestow superhuman powers on people. But that future is here today for Paul Thacker, who uses an exoskeleton about once a month to stand up and walk around — no small feat, considering he's paralyzed from the chest down.

Self-Driving Car Rules Will Lag Tech, Think Tanks Predict

Like an impatient teenager, self-driving car technology will be ready to hit the road well before authorities are ready to license it, predict a pair of studies released last week. That may not be such a bad thing, write researchers at RAND, a think tank in Santa Monica, Calif.

This 'Valet' App Parks Your Car For You

A Valeo Representative Swipes His Finger Across An IPhone To Initiate A Self Parking Demonstration At The 2014 International CES In Las Vegas, Nevada, January 8, 2014The self-parking is directed by an app which controls the vehicle, detects an available space and maneuvers into it.The "automated parking valet" created by the French equipment maker Valeo is among the technology innovations for the sector on display at this week's Consumer Electronics Show.While the idea of a fully autonomous car is a dream for some, this is a step which promises to alleviate at least some of the tedium facing m

Lockheed Martin's Robotic First Responder Is A Sight To Behold

Lockheed Martin's robotic first-responder is going forward in the DARPA Robotics Challenge. The 6-foot-2 and 330 pounds Atlas robot, built by Google's newly acquired Boston Dynamics, is one step closer to robotic overlords making us obsolete.

Why Google’s Robot Dog Terrifies You

One of the strangest and most unsettling things I have seen on the Internet in quite a while—and like everyone else, I regularly see strange and unsettling things on the Internet—is a YouTube video called "Petman Tests Camo.” It begins with a figure walking in place on a treadmill. The figure is wearing a beige combat suit with black gloves and boots, its face covered by a gas mask, likewise black. There is a harness around its torso, by which it is connected to a metal frame surrounding the treadmill.

The Cubli: a cube that can jump up, balance, and 'walk'

The Cubli is a 15 × 15 × 15 cm cube that can jump up and balance on its corner. Reaction wheels mounted on three faces of the cube rotate at high angular velocities and then brake suddenly, causing the Cubli to jump up. 

10 pop-culture robots that shaped the future

Say "laptop" or "tablet" or "app" to a technophile and you may get them interested. Say "robot," and you've got them excited. For centuries, we've been intrigued by the concept of creating mechanized beings that are as much like us as possible.

With robots and data, can Google keep to its promise not to be evil?

This Friday and Saturday, Google's latest product line will be on competitive display at a Florida racetrack. No, this isn't about the self-driving cars Google has been famously developing, but rather another genre of semi-autonomous devices: robots. In recent months, the company has been on a robotics buying spree.

Smart Compromises Bring Down Costs of Robots

When is one arm better than two? When you’re trying to build a mobile-manipulator robot that somebody can actually afford to buy. 

Why Google’s Driverless Car Is Evil

Google’s autonomous car is a media darling, often portrayed as a techno-marvel that will free the world’s commuters from the burden of operating motor vehicles.

Even at MIT, it’s a challenge to get robots to act human

A team from MIT is taking on the DARPA Robotics Challenge and finding it is hard to take robots out of their typical industrial environments into the real world.

Meet NASA’s Iron Man-like female robot

 NASA's Johnson Space Center has been hard at work preparing for the DARPA Robotics Challeng. The results are pretty cool. NASA sees robots taking over the world once they get self-aware doing NASA's dirty work on Mars. That's the way we read it. Behold Valkyrie, superhero robot. She will be our queen, soon.

Darling, Which Of Us Is The Robot?

Cyberneticist Slawomir Jaroslaw Nasuto has a radiance that can only be Polish. He was born in eastern Poland, in Lublin, during the Soviet years (Stalin was embraced by the post-WWII provisional Polish government headquartered there) and is now doing ground-breaking research on the brain and embodiment at the University of Reading in the UK.

Build and Control Your Own Robot Army

[Sarah Petkus] has a simple dream. She wants to build and command her own delta robot army. It all began with an illustration she drew of a woman hovering over a field of flowers. The flowers in this case had incandescent light bulbs as blooms. [Sarah] decided to create her image in the real world as an interactive art installation. Her first attempts at moving light flowers were based on a pulley system, which was unreliable and not exactly the graceful movement she imagined. Eventually [Sarah] discovered inverted delta robots.

Droids dance, dogs nuzzle, at robot museum

Madrid - A white robotic beagle sits wagging its tail and nuzzling anyone who pets it, while six pint-sized robots, flashing blue, pump their fists as they dance to the pop hit "Gangnam Style".They are the stars of a new museum launched in Madrid this month, showcasing what its owners say is one of the world's top collections of robot dogs and other pet automatons."As far as we know this is the biggest collection of robots in Europe, and in particular of Aibo robotic dogs," sold by Sony from 1999 to 2006, said the Robot Museum's manager Daniel Bayon, 39."They are a very important part of the m

Is it Legal to Fly Drones for Mapping in the United States?

There is no about it, drones (also referred to as UAVs and UAS) are a disruptive technology that will significantly impact geospatial professionals not only in the U.S., but around the world. While the mainstream media has mostly pushed the panic button with regards to privacy and drones, you don’t often read a discussion about using drones for mapping.

How William Shockley’s Robot Dream Helped Launch Silicon Valley

Photo: Robert W. Kelley/Time & Life Pictures/Getty ImagesROBOT DREAMER: The physicist William Shockley [shown in a 1963 photo] had many interesting ideas during his long career but perhaps none quite so sci-fi as his vision of a robotic workforce that would replace humans on factory floors and in the home. His passion for robotics and automation would form the backdrop for his decision to leave a successful career at Bell Labs and strike out for the West Coast. There, in 1955, he founded the first silicon electronics lab of what would become Silicon Valley. Photo: U.S.

Meet the robots inspired by nature on a Robotic Safari

An underwater turtle that is designed to help archaeologists investigate shipwrecks, has gone on show in the UK for the first time.U-CAT was created by engineers in Estonia to dive to inaccessible places too dangerous or deep for humans.It is part of the Science Museum’s Robot Safari exhibition that runs over the weekend and showcases 13 machines inspired by nature, including a flying bat, glowing fish and even a tumbleweed.The robot was designed with fins instead of propellers so it can still be driven in all directions without disturbing water and beating up silt from the bottom, whic

RoboJase: a robot comedian

Robojase is clearly a sleeper agent of our future robot overloads. They come in all quirky or funny, disarm you in more ways than one, and take over the world. Robojase is the first robot to host a show in the UK so, our future robot overlords are half way there. You have been warned.

Roadie handheld robotic tuner (almost) ready to rock

Learning to tune a guitar to concert pitch is one of the first hurdles to overcome when starting out, but it's a necessary evil. You have to know how the strings sound when in tune, to take action when they're not. Once your internal tuning fork gets going, the process of keeping strings ringing true becomes a bit of a drag. All manner of integrated and external gadgetry has been introduced over the years to help newbies or seasoned pros achieve and maintain pitch perfection with little effort.