We love Dash Robotics because they’ve managed to take serious research robots and turn them into serious toy robots that you can actually buy and play with, which is remarkable and kind of awesome. Two years ago, Dash comfortably surpassed its crowdfunding goal to bring you one skittery little robot, and now they’ve got a brand new one that’s easier to build and program and faster than ever.
This is Kamigami:
It’s easy to build in about 30 minutes with zero tools, using just pop rivets, no glue:
The robot is constructed out of a laser cut sheet of fabric/plastic composite that Dash Robotics invented, and it’s a significant upgrade from the previous paper/plastic composite. It’s durable enough to survive things like this:
And even in slow-mo, it looks fast:
This method of locomotion is, of course, based on DASH, which is based on (among other things) cockroaches. And since we’re tossing up lots of videos, how about UC Berkeley’s 2009 DASH presentation:
Kamigami is a major upgrade over the original robot. Here are the highlights:
- Do-It-Yourself: Kamigami can be assembled without tools in under an hour. No glue or soldering required.
- High-speed: High speed and robust locomotion inspired by some of nature’s fastest runners.
- iOS compatible: Free app allows you to control and program the robot. Android app coming soon.
- Programmable: Kamigami is programmable through the mobile app and a drag and drop programming interface.
- Rechargeable: Built-in high performance rechargeable battery. Recharges in about 30 minutes. 45-60 minutes of playtime per charge.
- Advanced sensor suite: Includes 10 different sensors, for things such as rotation, acceleration, sensing and responding to ambient light, sending and receiving infrared signals.
- Robot-to-robot communication: Infrared communication allows robots to talk to each other, allowing the robots to cooperate or compete.
- Durable: Robot’s flexible construction allows the robot to shrug off falls and collisions.
Kamigami is launching on Kickstarter today, and you can score one for $49, for delivery early next year. The robot is made domestically, and we’re not at all worried about Dash Robotics being able to come through and deliver. Retail price is closer to $70, and they only need $50k on Kickstarter to make it all happen.
[ Kamigami ]
Evan Ackerman is a senior editor at IEEE Spectrum. Since 2007, he has written over 6,000 articles on robotics and technology. He has a degree in Martian geology and is excellent at playing bagpipes.