We're big fans of RobotGrrl around here, and one of her current projects is these totally cool, totally DIY-able interactive robotic birds called RoboBrrds. If you've always wanted to throw yourself bodily into the world of Arduino-powered DIY robotics, this is a great way to go.
Here's just a taste of what these little brrds are capable of, as well as what goes into making them:
If you like what you see, you can build your very own RoboBrrd thanks to this exhaustively awesome Instructable here, and you can also find details over on Make: Projects. It'll take maybe a week's worth of on-and-off work, you'll likely need to order some electronics (and possibly some extra popsicles), and if you don't know how to solder, well, here's a great excuse to learn! YEAH!
Once you get your very own RoboBrrd up and running (or even if you don't), you can share it with the world (or at least with fellow robotics geeks) every Thursday night at 8pm EST through a Google+ video hangout. AND, you should remember that RobotGrrl is doing all of this out of the goodness of her (robotic?) heart, and there's a handy little donate button on her website should you wish to help inspire future generations of roboticists.
[ RoboBrrd ]
Evan Ackerman is the senior writer for IEEE Spectrum's award-winning robotics blog, Automaton. Since 2007, he has written over 6,000 articles on robotics and emerging technology, covering conferences and events on every single continent except Antarctica (although he remains optimistic). In addition to Spectrum, Evan's work has appeared in a variety of other online publications including Gizmodo and Slate, and you may have heard him on NPR's Science Friday or the BBC World Service if you were listening at just the right time. Evan has an undergraduate degree in Martian geology, which he almost never gets to use, and still wants to be an astronaut when he grows up. In his spare time, he enjoys scuba diving, rehabilitating injured raptors, and playing bagpipes excellently.