Make Vol 27, our special ROBOTS issue, is on newsstands

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The latest issue of MAKE (Vol 27) is out, and we have a ton of cool how-to projects in the issue.

The bots are back in Make: Magazine Volume 27 (O'Reilly Media, $14.99 USD), hitting newsstands July 26. This latest issue shows you how to build robots that can walk, roll, grab, spy, dance, chase a ball, and come when they're called. They're better than a puppy. Some of the buildable bots you'll meet include: • Yellow Drum Machine, which roves in search of things to drum on and then plays, records, and accompanies itself; • Roomba Recon, a robotic vacuum with a wireless router and webcam that drives around and lets you spy on whatever it sees, from any web browser; • Spazzi, a simple but lively dancing bot that bops to music, designed by the makers of the Keepon robot used to help autistic kids; • The Teleclaw, a dirt-cheap remote gripper designed by Gordon McComb, "the father of hobby robotics"; • And Chopsticks, the eight-legged winner of MAKE's Most Entertaining Robot contest. "Robots are a kind of a holy grail for makers, because they incorporate many different technologies: mechanisms, sensors, microcontrollers, and software," says Mark Frauenfelder, editor-in-chief of MAKE. "This makes them tremendously fun to build and interact with. The rate of progress in hobby robotics is incredible, and this volume of Make really captures the movement's state of the art." Our special robotics section also brings you the latest in hobby innovations (hamster power, anyone?), and shows you how to use the EZ-Robot controller board to turn any animated toy into a smart bot able to recognize objects and respond to voice commands. Elsewhere in Make: Magazine Volume 27, you'll learn how to create: • A jellyfish aquarium (these mesmerizing creatures are too delicate for standard fish tank filtration); • A budget version of the "virtual camera" used to film Avatar, by special-effects guru Glenn Derry; • A lightweight, portable LED sign with full keyboard that instantly displays any text in bright lights; • A treadmill desk that keeps you fit while you push papers and pixels; • A motion-sensitive Do-Not-Touch Box to surprise your friends; • A $30 gobo arm for capturing smartphone video from workbenches and countertops; • A solar backpack and wood-gas camp stove to technologize your camping; • A beer-pong cup that scoots around to increase degree of difficulty; • And a primer on ImageJ, the free open source program that manipulates video and photos to create brilliant and beautiful visualizations. Try these projects and show off your build in our Make project wiki.
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  1. That is a lot of awesome right there. I’m digging the walk along toys turned into robots, but I think the drummer bot takes the cake – I love that guy! I also love that K-9 turns his head which he couldn’t do in real life. Real life as depicted on Doctor Who, that is.

  2. Is there a more generic robotics platform available for pursuing experiments with AI? Seems like most researchers I see just cobble together their own robots. Mindstorm kit + Arduino perhaps?

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