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Video Friday: Robot Opera

Your weekly selection of awesome robot videos

3 min read
Video Friday: Robot Opera

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!):

RO-MAN 2021 – August 8-12, 2021 – [Online Event]
DARPA SubT Finals – September 21-23, 2021 – Louisville, KY, USA
WeRobot 2021 – September 23-25, 2021 – Coral Gables, FL, USA
IROS 2021 – September 27-1, 2021 – [Online Event]
ROSCon 2021 – October 21-23, 2021 – New Orleans, LA, USA

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


The New National Theatre Tokyo presents Super Angel: "Witness the birth of a new opera, performed by Alter 3, an android with artificial life who makes friends with children in the chorus as they sing and perform together."

Alter 3 is characterized by its body, in which all interior mechanisms are exposed, and a face from which it is impossible to determine gender or age, and it is an android robot designed to feel life, which is unprecedented in the field. Researchers from Osaka University and the University of Tokyo, which are famous for their work into androids and artificial life, have been collaborating up until now to create and study two Alter androids. The main challenges of this are whether or not it is possible for robots to acquire a sense of life independently through interactivity with the outside world, and to answer the basic question of exactly what life is through the course of this.

[ NNTT ] via [ Robotstart ]

Running the bases at Dodger Stadium is a fun tradition that many children look forward to after most Sunday games. But not all children, especially those who are currently hospitalized or recovering from an illness at home, can physically experience it. That's why UCLA Health, the Dodgers and OhmniLabs teamed up to create a virtual run-the-bases experience for 10 pediatric patients at UCLA Mattel Children's Hospital.

[ UCLA ]

Thanks, Joseph!

The way to teach robots to move like animals is to collect data from animals, and it's surprising how much of a difference some little tweaks can make to a quadrupedal gait.

[ ETHZ CRL ]

Thanks, Fan!

Walker X had me at back massage.

[ Ubtech ]

I needed this video today.

[ Soft Robotics ]

MIT faculty and staff reimagine an iconic mechanical engineering class - 2.007 (Design and Manufacturing I) - so students can go head-to-head in the final robot competition from their dorm rooms, apartments, or homes across the country.

The full competition livestreams are at the link below.

[ MIT 2.007 ]

The world's best female flair bartender vs the most advanced bartending robot. Who's gonna win?

Kuka's last human versus robot challenge involving table tennis was a huge disappointment, so I really hope this one is better.

[ Makr Shakr ]

I know software compliance is all the rage, but there's still something to be said for robot arms that are inherently soft.

[ Motion Intelligent Lab ]

Thanks, Fan!

We present a versatile, adhesive, and soft material (called VENOM) with high dynamic friction and normal adhesion forces on various smooth and rough surfaces. VENOM is a dry adhesive material based on a simple mixture of super-soft, fast cure platinum-catalyzed silicone and iron powder. Our result demonstrates the use of VENOM for the feet of our sprawling posture robot.

[ Paper ]

Thanks, Poramate!

Hybrid security by humans and robots. Communication with humans is handled by security guards through the avatar security robot Ugo, and hybrid security takes advantage of the characteristics of each robot and security guard.

What's the head on the stick at the end? I want one of those!

[ Ugo ]

Check out more views of the MQ-25 T1 test asset's historic flight, when it became the first unmanned aircraft to ever refuel another aircraft—piloted or autonomous—during flight. During a June 2021 flight test, the MQ25 T1 test asset transferred fuel to an F/A-18 Super Hornet.

[ Boeing ]

It's definitely cool to be able to do this with a robot, but it really makes you realize how effortless these tasks are for humans, right?

[ Extend Robotics ]

GE Research's Robotics and Autonomy team, led by Senior Robotics Scientist, Shiraj Sen, successfully completed Year 1 of a project with the US Army through its Scalable Adaptive Resilient Autonomy Program (SARA) to develop and demonstrate a risk-aware autonomous ground vehicle that was capable of navigating safely in complex off-road test conditions.

[ GE Research ]

Here's one way to add some safety to your industrial robot, I guess?

[ Kuka ]

Okay but seriously how is a kitchen "fully robotic" if you have to do all the prep and cleaning?

Also you left all the good stuff in the pot.

[ Moley ]

Here are a couple of videos showing some recent research from the Brussels Human Robotics Research Center (BruBotics); check the YouTube descriptions for paper references.


[ BruBotics ]

Thanks, Bram!

A Michigan Robotics Colloquium, hosted by the Robotics Graduate Student Council (RGSC), was held on July 27, 2021 about assistive technologies.

[ Michigan Robotics ]

The Conversation (0)

Deep Learning Could Bring the Concert Experience Home

The century-old quest for truly realistic sound production is finally paying off

12 min read
Vertical
Image containing multiple aspects such as instruments and left and right open hands.
Stuart Bradford
Blue

Now that recorded sound has become ubiquitous, we hardly think about it. From our smartphones, smart speakers, TVs, radios, disc players, and car sound systems, it’s an enduring and enjoyable presence in our lives. In 2017, a survey by the polling firm Nielsen suggested that some 90 percent of the U.S. population listens to music regularly and that, on average, they do so 32 hours per week.

Behind this free-flowing pleasure are enormous industries applying technology to the long-standing goal of reproducing sound with the greatest possible realism. From Edison’s phonograph and the horn speakers of the 1880s, successive generations of engineers in pursuit of this ideal invented and exploited countless technologies: triode vacuum tubes, dynamic loudspeakers, magnetic phonograph cartridges, solid-state amplifier circuits in scores of different topologies, electrostatic speakers, optical discs, stereo, and surround sound. And over the past five decades, digital technologies, like audio compression and streaming, have transformed the music industry.

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