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Quick post, busy busy: I’ve liked the look of these for a while. So imagine my joy when I stumble across this project, and its associated blog.
2 June, 2006 at 2:21 pm
Not a toy, but rather a real (and rather scary) bunch of artificial life gadgets can be found under the CONRO project at USC. (No, I did not find them in a fit of drunken vanity googling; they gave a seminar at Nottingham.) Peter Will (who’s from Aberdeen and has a fantastically transatlantic accent) runs the team, but if you want to see the toys in action, try the postdoc (what’s new?) who has a bunch of vids. They claim that the wires you see in the movies are just power, not control, ‘cos the batteries cost a fortune.
Their new SuperBot project is beginning to look good too, and they run on iPod batteries.
2 June, 2006 at 2:25 pm
I forgot to mention. Their mates have a robot that sh*ts houses.
2 June, 2006 at 7:47 pm
Weird. My first comment with the link to the CONRO project seems to have vanished, rendering my second comment meaningless. It was just that the toys which play ok separately but more interestingly together reminded me of these nifty (and strangely terrifying) robots from transatlantic Aberdonian Peter Will and his pals.
If you poke about, you’ll find a bunch of vids of these things stuck together in different ways. They reconfigure themselves when they feel like it. To go uphill they give themselves legs; to go downhill they turn themselves into a wheel; on a level surface, the fastest way to move is to pile themselves into a big tower then fall over.
5 June, 2006 at 11:29 am
Sorry about the comment thing – I have rather severe antispam stuff running, and you hit some arbitrary link count limit with your first comment. You should have had a ‘comment held for review’ notice, but it’s possible that my templates are so outdated, that didn’t happen.
One of these days I’m going to nuke all these templates and start again. Really, I am.
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