We hope you and your robots made it through Hurricane Sandy unscathed, and if you're still without food or power, just remember that robots can be powered by humans but not vice versa. So watch your back. Here's our advice: keep your electronic friends distracted with this week's Video Friday.
This promotional video from Yaskawa is worth watching for three reasons: the soundtrack, a fleeting picture of "the world's first servo motor," and the soundtrack.
[ Yaskawa ]
What's that you say? You want more videos with fantastic soundtracks? The University of Toronto Institute for Aerospace Studies Space Flight Lab knows where it's at.
This rover prototype is demonstrating the ability to retrace its tracks using just stereo vision, no GPS. This is important because on other planets, they don't have no GPS, yo. Also, if it wasn't clear, this video has been sped up by a significant but unspecified amount. ::cough::
[ UTIAS SFL ]
Seriously, I don't know what it is this week, here's another robot vid with a good soundtrack, showing a modular robot connection system called ModLock. Watch through until the end to see a robot do a somersault.
Connection mechanisms are critical to many modular reconﬁgurable systems. This paper introduces the ModLock manual connection system which is both easy and fast to attach/detach (requires seconds) as well as strong (failure at 2.2kN tensile load). This low cost, low proﬁle connection system has been demonstrated on a variety of robot conﬁgurations including legged walkers, ﬂying quadrotors and wheeled robots.
[ ModLock: A Manual Connector for Reconﬁgurable Modular Robots ]
And now, a robot walking on a tightrope. With another halfway decent soundrack, if you're into the dance/techo sort of thing:
Dammit robots. WHY MUST YOU ALWAYS MAKE ME FEEL SO INFERIOR.
Via [ Robots Dreams ]
This footage of the KIBO show at Korea National Science Museum starts off with a Pirates of the Caribbean-y piece and then ends with a slightly weird KIBO dance number.
This is one robotic boat that you don't want to get on the bad side of, as this video shows the U.S. Navy testing out remote-fired anti-armor missiles.
The reason it looks like a series of misses it that the missiles are punching straight through that big target board and splashing into the water, but if that had been a real boat, there wouldn't even be enough left to salvage for scrap.
Via [ Danger Room ]
We'll finish up this week with a very short, but very awesome chip of a young Isaac Asimov (sans the trademark mutton chops he'd grow later) explaining the Three Laws of Robotics:
Apparently, I need to start pronouncing "robot" differently now.
Via [ Neatorama ]
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.