Smuggler drones are on the rise
Police have intercepted two drones loaded with drugs and mobile phones that were being flown towards Pentonville in north London, in an attempt to smuggle contraband into the Islington prison.
People favour communicative robots over efficient ones
Making an assistive robot partner expressive and communicative is likely to make it more satisfying to work with and lead to users trusting it more, even if it makes mistakes, a study suggests. But the research also shows that giving robots human-like traits could have a flip side - users may even lie to the robot in order to avoid hurting its feelings. Researchers from UCL and the University of Bristol experimented with a humanoid assi...
Bioinspired robot mimics caterpillar gaits in natural scale
Researchers at the Faculty of Physics at the University of Warsaw, using the liquid crystal elastomer technology, originally developed in the LENS Institute in Florence, demonstrated a bioinspired micro-robot capable of mimicking caterpillar gaits in natural scale. The 15-millimeter long soft robot harvests energy from green light and is controlled by spatially modulated laser beam. Apart from travelling on flat surfaces, it can also climb slopes...
Robotic dragonflies show simulated flight potential
Futuristic dragonflies are flapping their wings in the Biomimetics Lab at the University of Auckland's Bioengineering Institute. Soon they may be lifting off their podiums and taking to the air. The research to create and develop them is led by Dr EF Markus Henke, a graduate in mechatronics from TU Dresden in Germany, who has come to Auckland to work with biomimetics expert and Biomimetics Lab director, Professor Iain Anderson.
VR and robotics help paraplegics walk again
Eight people who have been paralysed from spinal cord injuries have regained partial sensation and muscle control in their lower limbs after training with brain-controlled robotics, according to a study published in Scientific Reports. The patients used brain-machine interfaces, including a VR system that used brain activity to simulate full control of their legs. Videos illustrate their progress.
"Robots help us to understand humans"
It was a moving experience, in every sense of the expression, when a paraplegic Brazilian man kicked off the first ball of the tournament at the opening ceremony of the 2014 Soccer World Cup in Brazil. The young man was wearing an exoskeleton controlled with his thoughts. Two years later the researchers of the "Walk Again" project published a spectacular study: Training at the human-machine interface helped the patients' healing process.
New possibilities for the automotive industry in parallel kinematics
Industry is looking for new forms of robotics. In particular the automotive industry is searching for alternatives and additions to the classical industry robots. For many years, hexapods were considered to be exotic in automation but now, many applications are beginning to confirm the capabilities of the parallel-kinematic six-axis positioning systems.
Moorebot: the cute robotic personal assistant and entertainer
A technology startup specialising in product design for connected home automation, Pilot Labs, have launched Moorebot on IndieGoGo. Moorebot is a very unique animated robot for homes, businesses and office use. It combines robotic technology and cloud intelligence with a unique 'one eyed' camera design that can abstractly mimic human eye expressions.
Police report rapid rise in drone crime
It seems that for every ‘good news story’ on the use of UAVs, or drones, there is another involving more sinister uses for their capabilities. Only last week Electronic Specifier reported that Amazon had begun trialling its delivery drone service where customers could potentially make an order and have it delivered to their door, by drone, within 30 minutes.
Flying robots could help artists create outdoor murals
You may have heard of plans to use drones for delivering packages, monitoring wildlife, or tracking storms. But painting murals? That's the idea behind a project in Paul Kry's laboratory at McGill University's School of Computer Science. Prof. Kry and a few of his students have teamed up to program tiny drones to create dot drawings - an artistic technique known as stippling. It's no simple feat.