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Video Friday: Robot Halloween

Your weekly selection of awesome robot videos

3 min read
A small tracked robot in a pirate costume with a pumpkin bucket on its back on a Halloween decorated porch with two other robots out of focus in the background

Video Friday is your weekly selection of awesome robotics videos, collected by your friends at IEEE Spectrum robotics. 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!):

BARS 2021 – October 29, 2021 – Stanford, CA, USA

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


Happy Halloween from HEBI Robotics!

[ HEBI Robotics ]

Thanks, Kamal!

Happy Halloween from UCL's Robot Perception and Learning Lab!

[ UCL RPL ]

Thanks, Dimitrios!

Happy Halloween from Berkshire Grey!

[ Berkshire Grey ]

LOOK AT ITS LIL FEET

[ Paper ]

DOFEC (Discharging Of Fire Extinguishing Capsules) is a drone suitable for autonomously extinguishing fires from the exterior of buildings on above-ground floors using its onboard sensors. The system detects fire in thermal images and localizes it. After localizing, the UAV discharges an ampoule filled with a fire extinguishant from an onboard launcher and puts out the fire.

[ DOFEC ]

Engineering a robot to perform a variety of tasks in practically any environment requires rock-solid hardware that's seamlessly integrated with software systems. Agility engineers make this possible by engineering and designing Digit as an integrated system, then testing it in simulation before the robot's ever built. This holistic process ensures an end result that's truly mobile, versatile, and durable.

[ Agility Robotics ]

These aerial anti-drone systems a pretty cool to watch, but at the same time, they're usually only shown catching relatively tame drones. I want to see a chase!

[ Delft Dynamics ]

The cleverest bit in this video is the CPU installation at 1:20.

[ Kuka ]

Volvo Construction Equipment is proud to present Volvo LX03–an autonomous concept wheel loader that is breaking new grounds in smart, safe and sustainable construction solutions. This fully autonomous, battery-electric wheel loader prototype is pushing the boundaries of both technology and imagination.

[ Volvo ]

Sarcos Robotics is the world leader in the design, development, and deployment of highly mobile and dexterous robots that combine human intelligence, instinct, and judgment with robotic strength, endurance, and precision to augment worker performance.

[ Sarcos ]

From cyclists riding against the flow of traffic to nudging over to let another car pass on a narrow street, these are just a handful of typical yet dynamic events The Waymo Driver autonomously navigates San Francisco.

[ Waymo ]

I always found it a little weird that Aibo can be provided with food in a way that is completely separate from providing it with its charging dock.

[ Aibo ]

With these videos of robots working in warehouses, it's always interesting to spot the points where humans are still necessary. In the case of this potato packing plant, there's a robot that fills boxes and a robot that stacks boxes, but it looks like a human has to be between them to optimize the box packing and then fold the box top together.

[ Soft Robotics ]

The 2021 Bay Area Robotics Symposium (BARS) is streaming right here on Friday!

[ BARS ]

Talks from the Releasing Robots into the Wild workshop are now online; they're all good but here are two highlights:

[ Workshop ]

This is an interesting talk exploring self-repair; that is, an AI system understanding when it makes a mistake and then fixing it.

[ ACM ]

Professor Andrew Lippman will welcome Dr. Joaquin Quiñonero Candela in discussing "Responsible AI: A perspective from the trenches." In this fireside chat, Prof. Lippman will discuss with Dr. Quiñonero-Candela the lessons he learned from 15 years building and deploying AI at massive scale, first at Microsoft and then at Facebook. The discussion will focus on some of the risks and difficult ethical tradeoffs that emerge as AI gains in power and pervasiveness.

[ MIT ]

The Conversation (0)

The Lies that Powered the Invention of Pong

A fake contract masked a design exercise–and started an industry

4 min read
Vertical
Pong arcade game in yellow cabinet containing black and white TV display, two knobs are labeled Player 1 and Player 2, Atari logo visible.
Roger Garfield/Alamy

In 1971 video games were played in computer science laboratories when the professors were not looking—and in very few other places. In 1973 millions of people in the United States and millions of others around the world had seen at least one video game in action. That game was Pong.

Two electrical engineers were responsible for putting this game in the hands of the public—Nolan Bushnell and Allan Alcorn, both of whom, with Ted Dabney, started Atari Inc. in Sunnyvale, Calif. Mr. Bushnell told Mr. Alcorn that Atari had a contract from General Electric Co. to design a consumer product. Mr. Bushnell suggested a Ping-Pong game with a ball, two paddles, and a score, that could be played on a television.

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