Video Friday: Support Group for Bots, Russian Humanoid, and ANYmal Quadruped

Your weekly selection of awesome robot videos

3 min read

Evan Ackerman is IEEE Spectrum’s robotics editor.

Erico Guizzo is IEEE Spectrum's Digital Innovation Director.

Video Friday: Support Group for Bots, Russian Humanoid, and ANYmal Quadruped
Image: ETH Zurich via YouTube

Video Friday is your weekly selection of awesome robotics videos, collected by your biped Automaton bloggers. We’re also posting a weekly calendar of upcoming robotics events for the next few months; here’s what we have so far (send us your events!):

The Future of Rescue Simulation Workshop – February 29-4, 2016 – Leiden, Netherlands
ROS-Industrial Consortium Americas – March 3-4, 2016 – San Antonio, Texas
HRI 2016 – March 7-10, 2016 – Christchurch, New Zealand
RobArch 2016 – March 14-19, 2016 – Sydney, Australia
RoboCup European Open – March 30-4, 2016 – Eindhoven, Netherlands
WeRobot 2016 – April 1-2, 2016 – Miami, Fla., USA
National Robotics Week – April 2-10, 2016 – United States
AISB HRI Symposium – April 5-6, 2016 – Sheffield, United Kingdom
Robotics in Education 2016 – April 14-15, 2016 – Vienna, Austria
LEO Robotics Congress – April 21, 2016 – Eindhoven, Netherlands
International Collaborative Robots Workshop – May 3-4, 2016 – Boston, Mass., USA
ICARSC 2016 – May 4-6, 2016 – Bragança, Portugal
Robotica 2016 – May 4-8, 2016 – Bragança, Portugal
ARMS 2016 – May 9-13, 2016 – Singapore
ICRA 2016 – May 16-21, 2016 – Stockholm, Sweden
Skolkovo Robotics Conference – May 20, 2016 – Skolkovo, Russia
Innorobo 2016 – May 24-26, 2016 – Paris, France

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

This a clever little promotional commercial for IBM’s Watson, with Carrie Fisher and some other people you might recognize:

The best thing about this is that almost all of those robots were physically constructed, not CGI. I love that. And each of them has its own little vignette, which you can see on IBM’s YouTube channel.

[ IBM (YouTube) ]

It’s about 35 kilometers from France to England across the channel, and for the first time, a drone has made the trip. The flight took 72 minutes. Is this the longest (official) non-stop quadrotor flight ever?

[ Ocuair ]

The human-scale version of KAIST’s PIBOT, which we saw practicing simulated take-offs and landings in a real light aircraft cockpit, has learned to use flaps and landing gear:


The Russians have an anti-tank multicopter drone (!).

I don’t think I’ll be driving my tank to Russia anytime soon.

[ RT ]

If that Russian quadrotor didn’t scare you, how about this sinister-looking humanoid robot?

Supposedly, this thing will eventually be headed to the ISS to do work up there. And you know what that means: INTERNATIONAL HUMANOID ROBOT SPACE COMBAT.

[ ] via [ RT ]

Chris Atkeson has been working on robots at CMU for a long, long time. This week, he posted a bunch of old videos, including the Sarcos humanoid doing some juggling and walking on hammers:

There’s also video of LittleDog taking little steps over little rocks:

And, uh, this:

I’m not sure I even want to know. Actually, that’s a lie, I desperately want to know.

[ Chris Atkeson ]

A big round of applause for Simone Giertz’ latest robotic creation, guaranteed to make your life more chaotic:

[ Simone Giertz ]

There’s a lot of strategy behind autonomous mini-sumo robots, and there’s nobody more qualified to discuss it than Gundars Miezitis, a world champion:

I like the idea of having a standardized platform for autonomous sumo robots, so that winning is dependent clever programming rather than just clever design. It sounds like a kit for this robot should be showing up on Kickstarter soon.

[ Sumo Boy ]

I’ve been enjoying watching Thom Gibson’s video series on teaching a middle school robotics class in Austin, Texas:

“Robots are, like, smart and stupid at the same time.” This kid knows what’s up.

[ Thom Gibson ]

The first episode of Drone Racing League isn’t bad, I guess, once you skip past all of the non-racing parts and ignore the commentary:

[ DRL ]

This is a “compilation video of all the spherical tensegrity robots in the BEST Lab, as a demo for Google on Dec. 2nd 2015.”

It’s cool to see how these tensegrity robots will be able to carry a stabilized payload, even if the gimbal is only a mockup at this point.

[ BEST Lab ]

It’s unclear whether Northrop Grumman will get much more government funding for the X-47B, so enjoy videos like these while you can:

[ Northrop Grumman ]

We met ETH Zurich’s ANYmal last week, and here’s some additional video of it walking, trotting, and climbing some stairs:

[ ETH Zurich ] via [ RoboHub ]

Here’s the championship match of the ROBO-ONE Light 12th Biped Robot Fight Tournament:

More matches at the link below.

[ Biped Robot News ]

Adam Bry, CEO of Skydio, gave last week’s CMU RI seminar on algorithms and challenges in scaling up autonomous flight:

[ CMU RI ]

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