New algorithm supercharges robot navigation

Suppose you're trying to navigate an unfamiliar section of a big city, and you're using a particular cluster of skyscrapers as a reference point. Traffic and one-way streets force you to take some odd turns, and for a while you lose sight of your landmarks. When they reappear, in order to use them for navigation, you have to be able to identify them as the same buildings you were tracking before — as well as your orientation relative to them.

Ladies and gentlemen, boot your robots!

Miami Speedway in Homestead, Fla., was the place to be late last month for an unusual two-day competition: the DARPA Robotics Challenge Trials. But if you went expecting high-octane cars zooming around the track at blazing speed, you might have been disappointed.

Ford transforms Fusion Hybrid into a robot

The world of autonomous driving vehicles, which of late has mostly been dominated by news of self-driving Google Prius hybrids and a robotic Nissan Leaf on Japanese roads, grew a little more recently via American automaker Ford. The company recently unveiled it has converted one of its Fusion Hybrids into a research project for this developing technology.

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.

Jack the DVD ripping robot

[Andy] had a fairly large problem on his hands. For the last 15 years, he’s been collecting DVDs, and since he began, he’s run out of space on his shelves for these miraculous plastic discs. So, he decided to build a DVD ripping robot.

Gasbot is a methane-sniffing landfill robot

Methane is everywhere, and that’s pretty bad news for our planet. Thanks to gassy cows, the natural gas boom, and lots and lots of garbage rotting in our landfills, the amount of methane in the atmosphere has more than doubled since the industrial revolution.

Pixar's 'Wall-E' brought to life with impeccable, life-sized robot replica

It's a dream come true for millions of children and Pixar fans: Michael McMaster and his resourceful friends have built a life-sized, moving, and talking replica of Wall-E. As part of YouTube's Geek Week, Tested visited McMaster's workshop for an up close look at the mesmerizing robot, which ...

Video: RAPIRO is a humanoid robot kit for the Raspberry Pi

RAPIRO - designed by Shota Ishiwatari - is described by its creator as a "cute and affordable robot" kit designed to work with a Raspberry Pi.

Video: ARM robot solves 4x4 Rubik's Cube in 50 moves

ARM engineer David Gilday has designed a robot capable of solving a 4x4 Rubik's Cube in just 50 moves. The 'bot - powered by a Huawei Ascend P6 handset - is dubbed Multicuber 3.

Video: LEGO bricks with a Raspberry Pi brain

BrickPi - which recently surfaced on Kickstarter - is a platform that converts a standard Raspberry Pi into a robot.

This beer-pouring robot is programmed to anticipate human actions

A robot in Cornell's Personal Robotics Lab has learned to foresee human action in order to step in and offer a helping hand, or more precisely, roll in and offer a helping claw.

Robots learn a proper handoff, courtesy of Disney

A humanoid robot can receive an object handed to it by a person with something approaching natural, human-like motion thanks to a new method developed by scientists at Disney Research, Pittsburgh in a project partially funded by the International Center for Advanced Communication Technologies (interACT) at Carnegie Mellon University and Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT).

Video: Arduino Robot gets official at Maker Faire

The Arduino crew unveiled its Robot this past weekend at Maker Faire 2013 in San Mateo, California.

HERB robot discovers objects autonomously

A typical robot may struggle to discover objects in its surroundings when it relies on computer vision alone. However, by taking advantage of all of the information available to it - such as an object's location, size, shape and even whether it can be lifted - a robot can continually discover and refine its understanding of objects.

This Sparki robot is powered by Arduino

Building or programming robots may sound like a lot of fun, but most people probably have no idea where to start. Well, all that is about to change, courtesy of Sparki.

Virginia Tech researchers design robotic jellyfish for recon

There are a huge and varied number of uses for robots in the military, such as BigDog which is designed to carry food, gear, and other items for soldiers on the battlefield.

CHIMP designed to monkey around in the DARPA Robotics Challenge

Last April, DARPA issued a challenge to researchers and educational institutions to create a robot that could be used to save lives in the event of a disaster.

A Raspberry Pi powers this Bartendro

One of the things that has always most impressed me about bartenders is that they  often remember all the components that go into the mixing of a specific drink off the top of their heads.

Yeti helps out polar explorers

If you need help in snow and ice, who better to ask for help than a yeti?

BigDog robot learns to throw

It's usually the human that throws, and the dog that fetches. But Boston Dynamics' BigDog robot has now been demonstrated hurling cinder blocks across a room.