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Printable Robots From MIT

Photo By Jason Dorfman, CSAIL/MIT

MIT recently received a $10 million grant from the National Science Foundation.  CSAIL (Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory) at MIT is using the funding to develop a printable robot.

Daniel Rus, MIT professor and the project leader states:

This research envisions a whole new way of thinking about the design and manufacturing of robots, and could have a profound impact on society.

Someday you could head to a local printing store and select a robot that suits your need.  Then it would be printed out and you could take it home, all within 24 hours. While this sounds great, I’m not quite sure what they are printing already.  Is MIT printing just the origami legs shown here in the origami insect, or are they also printing the actual circuits?

Today one can already print out plastic items and parts if you own a Makerbot, but just imagine being able to someday print out an entire robot! Now that is exciting! Also involved in the program called An Expedition in Computing for Compiling Printable Programmable Machines are the University of Pennsylvania and Harvard University.

Link via CSAIL

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Quadrotor Swarm

Thanks to the people at GRASP Lab , part of the University of Pennsylvania, we have quadrotors that can do things like make figure eights.  Amazing how the swarm of quadrotors can change formation patterns mid flight. 
Alex Kushleyev, Daniel Mellinger and professor Vijay Kumar have developed the quadrotors.

Check out Daniel Mellinger’s page for more information on his quadrotor developments.  Nice work guys. I wonder how they are sending commands to the quadrotors and how long then can stay in the air.

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Graspy Learns to Read

Using a PR2 from Willow Garage they named Graspy, students from the University of Pennsylvania, have given Graspy the ability to read short texts. This is actually a difficult task as words can come in a variety of fonts the robot must learn to recognize. The code is open source and can be downloaded from ROS.org.

See also  Marge the reading robot from Oxford University.

Link via (CBS News)

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Quadrotor Drones And Crazy Maneuvers

From the GRASP Lab at the University of Pennsylvania comes a quadrotor that can slide through your open window or stick to a wall with velcro.

While these maneuvers are downright WTF? we want to know if the quadrotor has enough power to free itself from the velcro.

Hat tip to Morgan.

Link via (Gizmodo)

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