Designer and maker Love Hultén is best known for his retro-inspired video game and computer builds. But this one is quite different – an electromechanical drum machine that plays rhythms using a MIDI sequencer. Each of its components is modular, so it can be reconfigured to create unique audio sculptures.
THE BEST Robots
This robotic gadget uses an array of sensors to drive itself across various household surfaces, exposing them to powerful UV-C light, which can destroy up to 99.99% of bacteria and other germs, while ultrasonic waves can get rid of mites. It can even drive across your bed or under sheets. Save 26% in The Awesomer Shop.
Engineers from Stanford University have been working on an unusual design for a robot that uses inflatable tubes for its body. It can move about and change shapes by squeezing on its air bladders, and can pack up small when not in use. It’s like the more evolved cousin of the wacky waving tube guy.
With hoarding surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, there’s been quite the run on toilet paper here in the U.S. While add-on bidet toilet seats are always an option, Mike of Useless Duck Company thinks he’s got a more thorough solution – though his approach might be just a little more painful. Kids, don’t try this at home.
(PG-13: Language) Westworld just returned for its third season, and is off to a typically cryptic start. But 43 years before HBO’s hit sci-fi drama appeared, there was a movie version of Michael Crichton’s dystopian story. While it was pretty creepy in its day, and had some promising ideas, Mr. Sunday Movies is here to laugh at its many flaws.
Electron Dust shows off a nifty machine that can bounce a ping pong ball, while keeping it balanced and centered on its moving platform. It uses combination of open-source image processing software and Arduino-controlled stepper motors to work its magic. More build details here.
This weird and wonderful very short film attempts to answer the question “what kind of food would androids consume, if they needed to eat?” Apparently, the answer seems to be something very colorful and strangely textured. Directed and animated by Lukas Vojir, with music and sound by Resonate for XK Studio.
We’re surprised that LEGO machine expert JK Brickworks has never built a Great Ball Contraption module before, but his first one definitely lives up to his standards. Watch as four tiny LEGO robots work along an assembly line, each passing a ball to the next to move it down the line. It also appears to work as a hypnosis device.
Researchers from The University of Vermont and Tufts University have created tiny “xenobots,” which use living cells manipulated to perform tasks. AI algorithms guided the microsurgery used to create these organic machines which could someday clean microplastics from oceans, or repair organs in our bodies.
Guinness World Records introduces us to animatronics and robotics expert Matt Denton, and his prize-winning walking robot, Mantis. This gigantic, diesel-powered hexapod weighs in at nearly 4200 pounds, and can stomp around while an operator rides in its mid-section. Matt also happens to be the co-creator of BB-8.
In December 2019, Adam Savage unwrapped one of the coolest Christmas gifts ever – one of Boston Dynamics‘ four-legged Spot robots. He then took it out for its first walk to learn just how good it is at walking on challenging terrain. Adam and the crew at Tested plan on putting Spot through its paces over the next year.
James Bruton is always making cool and amazing things. His latest build is a version of Tickle-Me Elmo that can actually move and walk around thanks to an array of nine servo motors and a wheeled robot that pushes it along. The design was inspired by that creepy teddy bear in the Spielberg movie A.I. Part one here.
A robot takes part in a heist that goes wrong, and ends up in possession of a prize that makes it feel alive. But once it gets a taste for this sensation, it does whatever is necessary to hold onto that precious lifeforce. This graduation film by students of Rubika Valenciennes is simply fantastic on every level.
This pricey robot toy uses 22 programmable servo motors and joints to change from a mech into a vehicle, just like a Transformer. It can dance, pose, speak, walk, and drive like a car too. It’s fully-programmable via an app, and also supports voice commands.
If you’ve played God of War on the PS4, you’re probably familiar with Mimir, the disembodied head that helps guide Kratos and Atreus on their missions. Bar-El Studio created this animatronic replica of the egotistical character, complete with light-up mechanical eyes, and speech samples from the game.
Among the rows of giant televisions and folding computers at CES 2020, Samsung turned up with something we’ve been dreaming of since we were kids – a robotic assistant for your kitchen. The lightweight robot arms attach to the bottom of cabinets, and can download recipes to help with meal prep and assembly.
One of the big problems with Roombas and other robot vacuum cleaners is that they can’t go up or down stairs. Leave it to builder Peter Sripol and his pals to come up with a solution. They attached three ducted fans to a cheap Roomba knock-off, so it can fly like a drone between floors.
With builds like this and this, maker Giaco Whatever isn’t exactly known for his subtlety. So when he wanted to shoot a promo video for an upcoming Kickstarter campaign, he not only busted out one of those crazy Laowa probe lenses, but he fabricated a camera mount for an industrial robot to give it motion control.
While humans are still very much a part of assembling vehicles, robots are often used for the heavy lifting and dangerous tasks like painting and welding. Watch in awe as an army of 45 KUKA robots work in harmony at MAGNA Presstec to create frames for the Mercedes-Benz G-Class SUV.
Innfos‘ modular desktop robot is designed for scientists and hobbyists alike. Configurable with up to six axes, this robotic arm has extremely dexterous and smooth actuators can be used can be used to pick up objects up to 1kg (2.2lb), hold machining tools, or to perform other precision tasks.
With their high-tech 3D printer that can print up to 8 different materials with a single nozzle, engineers from Wyss Institute and Harvard SEAS are showing how they can create tiny soft robots which use a mix of hard and flexible substances. By introducing a vacuum into its chambers, it’s able to walk without motors.
Engineers from Canada’s Laval University Robotics Laboratory show off their motion simulator robot by strapping a Baymax bobblehead to its platform. As you can see in this demo footage, the kinematically redundant parallel mechanism offers incredible flexibility when it comes to positioning its platform.
The MIT Biomimetics Robotics department shows off a pack of its miniature “cheetah” robots, letting them frolic and roam the campus, showing off their agility along the way. The quadruped robots are about the size of medium-sized dog, and weigh just 20 pounds each. They can walk, run, flex, and even perform backflips.
While the goal of American robot fighting is total annihilation, Japan prefers to stick with something a little more gentlemanly in its ROBO-ONE duels. Watch as bipedal bots Bluethunder and Metallic Fighter do battle in thoughtful close combat. We’re impressed that they’re able to stand themselves back up after a knock-down.
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