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Video: Mech Warfare Rocks RoboGames 2012

We've got some incredible exclusive video from inside the 2012 Mech Warfare arena at RoboGames

2 min read
Video: Mech Warfare Rocks RoboGames 2012

BAM! Cut together, edited, and polished (sorta) is the official (or whatever) RoboGames Mech Warfare 2012 video extravaganza! I say "extravaganza" because we have for you not one, not two, but three videos of this epic event of epicness.

The first video includes lots of clips and a few almost-complete battles from throughout the competition from both day one and day two. Not included is the final deathmatch between Immortal and Insanity Wolf; since this montage-style vid is already pushing nine minutes we'll have the final for you separately.


Insanity Wolf (the giant black mech) made it to the final round and faced off against Immortal (the slightly-less-giant gold-ish mech). As you'll see, speed and maneuverability, as opposed to firepower, helped each robot make it to the end of the bracket, and the last battle was a serious contest of skill. And definitely firepower.



Lastly, we've got footage of an international hardcore fight between three mechs armed with actual rocket launchers. Due to safety concerns, the match took place in one of the ant-weight battlebot arenas. Ultimately, victory went to the last robot standing. Sort of.


The competition this year was a huge improvement over last year, thanks in no small part to locating the arena itself as far away as possible from the wireless interference caused by the rest of the RoboGames competition. Also, the majority of the mechs made it all the way through the competition without suffering catastrophic mechanical failures, which is a notable achievement. Now that the arena and the associate infrastructure (wireless controllers, video feeds, scoring system, etc.) are all working reliably, Mech Warfare seems destined for greatness and probably the Olympics, but until that happens, keep up to date with the sport at the website below.

[ Mech Warfare ]

[ RoboGames 2012 ]

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The Bionic-Hand Arms Race

The prosthetics industry is too focused on high-tech limbs that are complicated, costly, and often impractical

12 min read
A photograph of a young woman with brown eyes and neck length hair dyed rose gold sits at a white table. In one hand she holds a carbon fiber robotic arm and hand. Her other arm ends near her elbow. Her short sleeve shirt has a pattern on it of illustrated hands.

The author, Britt Young, holding her Ottobock bebionic bionic arm.

Gabriela Hasbun. Makeup: Maria Nguyen for MAC cosmetics; Hair: Joan Laqui for Living Proof

In Jules Verne’s 1865 novel From the Earth to the Moon, members of the fictitious Baltimore Gun Club, all disabled Civil War veterans, restlessly search for a new enemy to conquer. They had spent the war innovating new, deadlier weaponry. By the war’s end, with “not quite one arm between four persons, and exactly two legs between six,” these self-taught amputee-weaponsmiths decide to repurpose their skills toward a new projectile: a rocket ship.

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