Meet Jeff: mockumentary/biopic about a giant, killer robot who plays himself

Meet Jeff is a Wired web-series that's a mockumentary about a robot actor called Jeff 1000 who has been given his own biopic, starring Summer Glau.

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Driving a legobot with a simulated worm nervous-system

More news from the Openworm project, whose Kickstarter I posted in April: they've sequenced the connectome of all 302 neurons in a C. Elegans worm, simulated them in software, and put them to work driving a Lego robot.

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The dirty secret of Google's self-driving cars


They've 700,000 miles, but mostly the same few thousand miles, over and over again -- because the cars only work if every single light, piece of street furniture, and other detail is mapped and verified by armies of human and computer analysts, and when anything changes, the mapping needs to be re-created.

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Weird SPAM-colored soft robot moves like a zombie hot dog

Harvard University released video of this unnerving soft robot that can move untethered through punishing conditions, including snow and fire, yet will remain resilient. It looks a bit like reanimated sliced SPAM in the time-lapse crawling footage, and like SPAM, it retains its shape even when its appendages are run over by a car.

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Micro-robots and programmable bees

robobees 3

National Geographic profiles Robert Wood, Harvard's maker of micro-robots inspired by nature, like these programmable bees.

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Barnacle robot to search ship hulls for contraband

MIT researchers demonstrated a barnacle-like underwater robot that can traverse a ship's hull to seek out secret compartments.

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Rubbery, crawling robot can traverse snow, fire

Harvard's Michael Tolley created the 65cm long, soft, pneumatic robot whose operating parameters allow it to run over -9'C terrain or walk through naked flames (for 20 seconds, at least).

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Trundling lidar-guided printerbot will find you and deliver your hardcopy


A Fuji-Xerox prototype printer-robot builds a model of the room and then drives itself to your desk to deliver your printouts, saving you the precious calories you'd waste, running around the office, trying to figure out which printer you sent your job to.

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Pesco on the softer side of robots

untitled Over at Businessweek, I wrote a feature about soft robots, from inflatable robot arms to an exoskeleton worn like a jacket.

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Music video: "Every Movie Robot"

"Every Movie Robot Supercut," Song A Day #2057 by Jonathan Mann.

Industrial cake-decorating robot

Bakery equipment manufacturer Unifiller's robot can frost and decorate a cake much more efficiently than you. (via Laughing Squid)

Self-folding origami robot crawls around

MIT and Harvard researchers developed a laser-cut robot that when powered up folds itself into a 3D shape and walks away.

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Telerobotic baseball fans

Korea's Hanwha Eagles baseball team have installed rows of telerobot "fans" in the stadium that are controlled by remote spectators. (Thanks, Chris Arkenberg!)

Japan eyes 2020 robo-Olympics

"In 2020 I would like to gather all of the world's robots and aim to hold an Olympics where they compete in technical skills," said Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe last week. This is where it begins, meatsacks.

Connect Four Robot

MIT student Patrick McCabe made a version of the classic game Connect Four where you play against a robot! (via Laughing Squid)