Video Friday: This Toyota Basketball Robot Shoots 3-Pointers Better Than You

Your weekly selection of awesome robot videos

Toyota basketball robot
Photo: Kazumichi Moriyama/Impress
Toyota's basketball robot.
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Video Friday is your weekly selection of awesome robotics videos, collected by your Automaton bloggers. We’ll also be posting a weekly calendar of upcoming robotics events for the next few months; here’s what we have so far (send us your events!):

U.S. National Robotics Week – April 6-14, 2019 – USA
We Robot 2019 – April 11-13, 2019 – Miami, Fla., USA
RoboSoft 2019 – April 14-18, 2019 – Seoul, Korea
NIST ARIAC Challenge – April 15-19, 2019 – Online
Nîmes Robotics Festival – May 17-19, 2019 – Nîmes, France
ICRA 2019 – May 20-24, 2019 – Montreal, Canada
2nd Annual Robotics Summit & Expo – June 4-6, 2019 – Boston, Mass., USA

Let us know if you have suggestions for next week, and enjoy today’s videos.


Dorabot has brilliant realized that machine learning requires machine teaching. It just makes sense! Isn’t it time to get a smart robot to teach your dumb robots to be less stupid?

The first 30 seconds of that video were scary real.

[ Dorabot ]


One of the hardest problems in home robotics has been solved by Misty. With rockets.

[ Misty Robotics ]


If pets could travel in self-driving cars, where would they go? Today, we’re thrilled to announce our newest pet project—Waymo Pet. It’s a self-driving service, exclusively for our furry, feathery, and scaly friends. Pets may apply starting April 1, 2019.

My snake would have loved this.

[ Waymo ]


How to use a robot to paint a room with efficiency and care, by Norwalk Havoc Robot Combat.

[ Norwalk Havoc Robot Combat ]


With all the April Fool’s stuff out of the way, we’re now back to our regularly scheduled programming.


If you missed our post on National Robotics Week, this excellent video is still worth a look.

April 6-14, National Robotics Week starts tomorrow!

[ NRW ]


How many robots does it take to shoot a basketball?

[ Impress ]


Soft Robotics robot celebrates MLB Opening Day in style.

The video was action-packed and over quickly, just like baseball isn’t.

If you’d like more excitement than baseball has to offer, Soft Robotics’ grippers can also gently handle your sausage roll:

[ Soft Robotics ]


I’ve been subscribed to this dude’s YouTube channel for 8 years, and it pays off today!

And here’s why I subscribed in the first place, from 8 years ago:

[ Festo ]


This video presents the task of an autonomously served coffee by our mobile manipulation robot mobmi. It is the outcome of the semester project by Julien Kindle performed at the Autonomous Systems Lab of ETH Zurich.

[ ASL ]


Mecademic, a start-up from Canada, has created the smallest industrial robot in the world, the Meca500. It is a very accurate & fast robot, made for application in small labs, e.g. in electronics or medial device environments. Our first application for testing the robot was implementing the game "4 Connect". Do you want to play against the smallest (but also maybe even the smartest) robot in the world?

[ Drag&Bot ]

Thanks Thilo!


Some top-notch autonomous stair climbing by ANYmal at the Oxford Dynamic Robot Systems Group.

[ DRS ]


It’s nice that Minitaur can adapt to limb damage now, but watching it drag itself around makes me want to take it to whatever the robot equivalent of a vet is.

[ Paper ]


It should not be surprising at all that you can make anything into a drone, even a shotgun.

Does this make drones scarier? I don’t think so. It makes people scarier, though.

[ Patent ] via [ Engadget ]


Built Robotics: autonomous construction robots that won’t run over your dog.

[ Built Robotics ]


Flexiv Ltd. today ushered in a new generation of industrial robot with the launch of its new robot, Rizon, at the annual Hannover Messe trade fair. Rizon is the world’s first adaptive robot combining direct force control with advanced AI, paving the way for greater performance and broader scope of robotic tasks across multiple industries including manufacturing, healthcare, retail and more.

[ Flexiv ]


Have you ever dreamed of being a superhero, making your grandparents incredibly proud or fail-safe autonomous driving? All right. I have very good news for you: The Roboy student team created TeleRickshaw to take over control of real autonomous vehicles when necessary and save thousands of innocent lives. All you need is a VR headset and controllers. TeleRickshaw handles the rest and gives you lifelong fame.

I have nothing to add.

[ Roboy ]


This week’s CMU RI Seminar comes from Andrea Thomaz at the University of Texas at Austin and Diligent Robotics, on “Robots Learning from Human Teachers.”

In this talk I will cover some of the recent work out of the Socially Intelligent Machines Lab at UT Austin. The vision of our research is to enable robots to function in dynamic human environments by allowing them to flexibly adapt their skill set via learning interactions with end-users. We explore the ways in which Machine Learning agents can exploit principles of human social learning, and breakdown assumptions about what “data” will be like, when the source of that data is an average human teacher. I will cover our work on interactive reinforcement learning algorithms that model the attention of the teacher; coupling learning from demonstration with simulation to make the best use of valuable interactions with people; and algorithms for re-using previously learned tasks in new contexts with the help of a teacher’s hints and corrections. In the latter part of the talk, I will put on my other hat, as co-founder and CEO of Diligent Robotics to tell you about how we are translating our research on adapting to human environments into a commercial product. Our first product, Moxi, is a robot assistant that works alongside and supports clinical care teams in hospitals. Moxi was launched into beta trials late last year, and has been deployed in four hospitals across Texas to date.

[ CMU RI ]


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