robots

Syracuse has a grass cutting robot.
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Welcome the first student to Robot College.

Syracuse University has loaded up its roster with a new addition. It's called the Spider and its a remote-control grass cutting robot.

According to Syracuse.com:

It's used to mow the steepest hills, according to Jim Miller, director of SU's physical plant. In an SU video, Miller said the decision behind the purchase was worker safety on the steep, sometimes slippery banks.

If you're thinking this is a great way to mow the lawn while sitting on your deck having a beer, you might want to think twice, though. Similar mowers start at $15,000.



Watch the Spider spin its web of grass clippings right here.

Robot Lawnmower Handles Hills Around Campus from Syracuse University News on Vimeo.



Looks exactly like the Robot College we've always envisioned.

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Just when you think robots are about to take over the world, they go and do something like this.

The DARPA Robotics Challenge was held this past weekend, with numerous teams “vying to develop robots capable of assisting humans in responding to natural and man-made disasters.”

Turns out they had a few disasters of their own as well.

IEEE Spectrum created a compilation of robot falls from the first day of the finals, and while this is pretty funny to watch in itself, one YouTuber took it a step further and mashed it up with some WWE commentary turning it into Internet gold.

“As much as nobody wanted to see a robot fall, everybody wanted to see a robot fall,” wrote IEEE Spectrum on their blog.

The course involved the competing robots trying to open doors, turn valves, drive cars and climb over rubble.

Team KAIST from South Korea took home the top prize with the fastest time, and here’s their robot, DRC-Hubo, stepping up to victory. It was built with wheels on its knees to help protect it from taking a tumble.

“These robots are big and made of lots of metal and you might assume people seeing them would be filled with fear and anxiety,” said DRC organizer Gill Pratt. “But we heard groans of sympathy when those robots fell. And what did people do every time a robot scored a point? They cheered!”

Meanwhile, nothing can stop the beasts from Boston Dynamics, so while these falls are funny, the threat is still very real.

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Well, it’s only a matter of time now.

We’ve seen self-flying drones, supercharged drones, robotic hell hounds that can withstand a good kicking and human-like bots that are taking over businesses in Japan.

Pretty soon we will be slaves to these things, which are growing smarter every day.

Researchers at MIT have successfully created “the first four-legged robot to run and jump over obstacles autonomously” thanks to new technological developments with its DARPA-funded robotic cheetah.

It uses a built-in laser system called LIDAR to see things in its line of vision and then figures out the best way to go get over it.

For example, imagine a swarm of rebel Amazon drones just dropped a bunch of Kindle Fire tablets on your head putting you out of commission.

If one of these robotic cats happen to come across your lifeless corpse, it could very easily leap over it without any sort of human guidance.

Here’s an explanation of how it works from MIT’s press release:

To get a running jump, the robot plans out its path, much like a human runner: As it detects an approaching obstacle, it estimates that object’s height and distance. The robot gauges the best position from which to jump, and adjusts its stride to land just short of the obstacle, before exerting enough force to push up and over. Based on the obstacle’s height, the robot then applies a certain amount of force to land safely, before resuming its initial pace.

It was able to successfully conquer hurdles up to 18-inches tall while going about 5mph.

Here’s a less threatening video of the cheetah running across some grass, but don’t be deceived by the innocent-looking prance.

The end is neigh.

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Google-owned Boston Dynamics has been terrifying us for years with their advancements in robotic hell hounds, but their latest video features something slightly less frightening and kinda cute.

Spot is a four-legged, 160-pound robot that is designed for both indoor and outdoor use, and it has a sensor on its head to help it navigate.

Watch it march around the grounds and through their offices, occasionally getting kicked by the staff.

While we know it’s just a robot and it doesn’t have real emotions, it still makes you fell kinda bad watching it react to the abuse.

“No robots were harmed in the making of this video,” they write at the end.

What’s more worrisome, however, is that larger model accompanying Spot up the hill later on in the clip. You do not want to mess with that thing.

Robots are already managing hotels in Japan and eating women in South Korea. And Singapore is hard at work creating a nightmarish eel drone.

It’s really only a matter of time before all of these advancements blow up in our face and we are slaves or dogfood to these creatures.

funny-news-fail-korea-roomba-hair
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Beware of the Roomba.

A woman in South Korea recently found herself battling one of the vacuum robots after it tried to eat her hair instead of cleaning the room.

From the report:

On the day of the accident, she turned on her robot vacuum as usual, and laid down flat on the floor to rest, leaving the robot to do its job. The robot vacuum came around her relaxing on the floor, and suddenly sucked her hair into its nozzle. The vacuum stopped running one to two minutes after the sudden hair intake.



It’s unclear why she would lay down on the floor next to the thing in the first place and not expect to have this happen.

She suffered only minor injuries and the emergency responders said the vacuum sensed her hair and thought it was dust.

Regardless, this doesn’t bode well for Japan’s new all-robot hotel.

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Sorry bro, your days of dominating everyone at beer pong are numbered.

Empire Robotics has created a robotic arm with a specialized ball on the end of it that hardens and softens to pick up objects.

So, for example, it can pick up ping pong balls and toss them into Solo cups.

Watch it flawlessly make 6 cups in a row in the video above, and – if you dare – challenge it in person at the 2015 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas.

"The robot is not perfect, so it's possible for a human to win, but it's pretty good, so you'd have to be pretty good at beer pong," said the company's project manager John Dean.

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Via: Google
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You know those annoying boxes on websites that ask you to type hard-to-read text as a security precaution against spammers and bots? And then after 3 failed attempts you just throw your computer out the window instead?

Well their days might be numbered.

Google has announced that it has developed a new method of proving that a user is a real, live human being.

"No CAPTCHA reCAPTCHA" - as it's being called - simply asks if you are a robot, and then you click a box if you are not.

According to Google:

Our research recently showed that today's Artificial Intelligence technology can solve even the most difficult variant of distorted text at 99.8% accuracy. Thus distorted text, on its own, is no longer a dependable test.

To counter this, last year we developed an Advanced Risk Analysis backend for reCAPTCHA that actively considers a user's entire engagement with the CAPTCHA—before, during, and after—to determine whether that user is a human.

If you are a robot… well then you need to stop, right now. Bad robot.

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