Boston Dynamics terrifies humanity again with humanoid robot that can do backflips like an Olympic gymnast

As many people – including us – have said many times, Boston Dynamics makes the scariest robots in the world (see video below). 

Not only do they look terrifying, they move in such a realistic way that you wonder if the makers have done something horrible to achieve such life-like motion.

Like transplanting an actual human brain into the humanoids or a dog’s brain into the canines to achieve such expert movement skills.  Continue reading Boston Dynamics terrifies humanity again with humanoid robot that can do backflips like an Olympic gymnast

Toyota unveils its third-generation humanoid robot T-HR3

Company says new robot is enabled through advanced torque servo module and master maneuvering system

Toyota has revealed the third generation of its humanoid robot, the T-HR3, designed and developed by its Partner Robot business unit. 

The company’s aim seems to be to market the robot for use in the home, perhaps for elderly care or companionship, but says it can also be applied in industrial sectors such as healthcare, construction and disaster recovery. (See video below.)

Toyota says its latest robotics platform will explore new technologies for safely managing physical interactions between robots and their surroundings, and it features a new remote maneuvering system that mirrors user movements to the robot.

Toyota says the T-HR3 reflects the company’s broad-based exploration of how advanced technologies can help to meet people’s unique mobility needs.  Continue reading Toyota unveils its third-generation humanoid robot T-HR3

Mouser Electronics to distribute Robotis components

Mouser Electronics has reached a global agreement with Robotis to distribute the company’s components, which include a range of controllers, servo motors, industrial actuators, and open-source development boards. 

The Robotis portfolio is now available from Mouser Electronics, although it’s not clear whether complete versions of the company’s humanoid robots and its TurtleBot will be sold through Mouser.

Robotis’ OpenCM9.04 open-source controllers run on an STMicroelectronics STM32 F1 microcontroller with a 32-bit ARM Cortex-M3 core.  Continue reading Mouser Electronics to distribute Robotis components

SoftBank has sold 10,000 Nao robots. Now the tiny humanoid wants to ‘conquer new markets’ with Zora

SoftBank Robotics and Zora Bots have signed what they describe as “a major partnership” aimed at reaching a wider audience for the humanoid robot Nao.

Zora Bots, which has already deployed its software designed for robots in the health sector, is now the world’s leading distributor of Nao and is poised to expand its solution in many areas including retail, hospitality, education and personal services.

This strategic rapprochement in the international arena will bring humanoid robotics into a new dimension and make Nao available to a wider audience.  Continue reading SoftBank has sold 10,000 Nao robots. Now the tiny humanoid wants to ‘conquer new markets’ with Zora

Audi autonomous car tech boss chats with humanoid robot as though it were entirely natural

Audi has demonstrated its autonomous car – which it calls “Jack” – in a road test featuring a humanoid robot called Sophia, developed by Hanson Robotics.

Audi’s head of concept development, automated driving, Klaus Verweyen, was sitting in the driver’s seat of the car, while Sophia was in the passenger seat.

Verweyen chatted away to Sophia as though it was the most normal thing in the world. Meanwhile, Jack drove itself from Audi’s facility onto a main highway and back again.  Continue reading Audi autonomous car tech boss chats with humanoid robot as though it were entirely natural

SoftBank to buy Boston Dynamics, the maker of those unnervingly realistic humanoid and canine robots

boston dynamics bigdog

SoftBank, the maker of the Pepper and Nao humanoid robots, has reached a deal to buy Boston Dynamics, the robotics business owned by Alphabet, the parent company of Google. 

Some of the robots Boston Dynamics has been building a wide range of robots, some of which are humanoid, others canine and one or two wheeled – or a hybrid of these structures.

But whatever robots the company has made, they’ve been widely acclaimed as having some of the most realistic movements and best balance of any robots made anywhere – watching them move can be quite unnerving because they move almost exactly like humans or canines.  Continue reading SoftBank to buy Boston Dynamics, the maker of those unnervingly realistic humanoid and canine robots

Humanoid robot sumo wrestlers invited to take part in crazy contest

the construct humanoid sumo contest
Let’s get ready to rumble!

No matter how bizarre we think things are, there’s always something even more bizarre than we imagined. 

In the latest challenge to our sanity, The Construct is organising what it says is a “humanoid sumo contest”. Yes, that’s what they said. Sumo, as in Japanese wrestling. With virtual humanoid robots. Within The Construct’s specially-created online environment.

As much as we admire The Construct’s technical achievements, we’re not sure if this apparently absurd idea is the right way to go about marketing what is actually a highly professional and capable cloud-based application for developing robots.

But be that as it may, The Construct has indeed set up a humanoid sumo contest, dojo and all, to see whose robot has the sheer girth and mid-riff elasticity to bounce opponents out of the ring.  Continue reading Humanoid robot sumo wrestlers invited to take part in crazy contest

Honda to bring out Asimo robot for appearance at Narita airport

Asimo will be appearing at Narita airport
Asimo will be appearing at Narita airport

Honda plans to conduct demonstrations of Asimo, Honda’s bipedal humanoid robot, at Narita International Airport over a one-week period from Monday, March 28 through Sunday, April 3, 2016.

This will be the first time for any airport in Japan to hold this type of event in the area prior to where travelers begin the immigration process and formal entry into the country.

Honda will showcase its technological strengths by providing Asimo, an outstanding humanoid robot representing Japan, to welcome and offer its hospitality to travellers who just arrived.  Continue reading Honda to bring out Asimo robot for appearance at Narita airport

Airbus to develop humanoid robots with Japanese and French partners

Kawada Industries’ HRP-4 humanoid robot
Kawada Industries’ HRP-4 humanoid robot

Airbus Group Innovations (AGI), the global research and technology network of Airbus Group, has agreed a joint robotics research programme with Japan’s National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST) and France’s National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS).

The programme will be dedicated to the research and development of humanoid robotic technology to perform complex manufacturing tasks in factories. The majority of research will be conducted at the CNRS-AIST Joint Robotics Laboratory (JRL), which was established in 2004 on the AIST campus in Tsukuba, Japan.

Satoshi Sekiguchi, Director General of the Department of Information Technology and Human Factors at AIST, inaugurated the new project together with Jean-Yves Marzin, Head of the CNRS Institute for Engineering and Systems Sciences (INSIS), and Sébastien Remy, Head of Airbus Group Innovations. Continue reading Airbus to develop humanoid robots with Japanese and French partners

Yamaha’s motorbike-riding robot steps up a gear

MotoBot, Yamaha’s motorbike-riding robot
MotoBot, Yamaha’s motorbike-riding robot

Yamaha Motor Company says the company’s humanoid riding robot – MotoBot – has moved into the second phase of its development, and that the current partnership in joint development with SRI International is set to continue.

Presentations on the MotoBot headed by Yamaha Motor and SRI representatives took place at the last month’s CES, the global consumer electronics and technology trade show being held in Las Vegas, where in recent years, fields such as autonomous driving and robotics have been featured.

Being an automated humanoid robot able to ride a non-modified motorcycle, the MotoBot became a hot topic of conversation when it was exhibited at the 44th Tokyo Motor Show in 2015. Continue reading Yamaha’s motorbike-riding robot steps up a gear