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This Thread-Like Robot That Wiggles Through Blood Vessels Could Save Lives

Although the speed at which today's technology is developing may scare some people, it has a huge potential to create life-saving machines. This is one of them. The 'robo-thread' is a small, snake-like robot that can glide through the brain's blood vessels and deliver clot-reducing drugs to treat strokes or aneurysms. Although the idea of a robot snake crawling through your brain isn't the most pleasant of thoughts, this little robot is promising to save lives and replace open brain surgery. 

tiny snake-like thread robot can perform brain surgery
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This Soft-Bodied Swimming Robot Is Powered Entirely By Light

Scientists have just created a soft-bodied swimming robot that is powered solely by light. It could revolutionize water transportation, oceangoing robots and even surgical procedures. 


light powered robot with soft body first of it's kind
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Robot Helps Doctor Perform First Long Distance Heart Surgery

For the first time in history, a surgeon performed heart surgery without actually being in the room. Or building. Or town. The surgeon was 20 miles away from their patient, and the surgery was done with the assistance of a robot. Yes, we are officially living in the future. 

robot helps surgeon perform first long distance heart surgery
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I, For One, Welcome Our Robot Overlords

Robots are no longer a fantasy of the future. For centuries, humans have been hypothesizing about robots. Now, technology is advancing at such a fast rate that our fantasies (or nightmares) are becoming true. Robots are, whether or not we like it, going to continue to be more involved in our lives. So we might as well welcome our robotic overlords. Here are twelve GIFs of some very cool robots that exist today. 

twelve gifs of robots that exist today
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YouTube Mistakenly Bans Robot Battles For "Animal Cruelty" Content

So in an endless attempt to filter the internet and make sure no one is triggered, sites that allow content uploading have their work cut out for them making everyone feels warm and fuzzy. Well apparently, YouTube's AI has taken issue with all the mistreatment of its fellow robotic brethren, and started to ban contributors videos featuring robot battles. Some users reported only a few videos going down, while others reported dozens if not hundreds of videos that were affected. 

Shows like BattleBots and Robot Wars found a lot of their content suddenly banned from the site, even if the users were able to return the videos through filing a claim. But users that lost numerous videos would need far too much time to retrieve all of their videos. Luckily though, YouTube figured out what had happened, and the videos have been returned to their rightful place. So in honor of these bots that nearly saw their fame quashed before its time, here are some of the Battle Bots best. You can also decide for yourself if this warrants a YouTube ban or not, or maybe check out your new favorite YouTube binge.

YouTube AI bans robot battles for inappropriate content relating to animal abuse
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Say “Hello” to Kuri, a new robot that follows you around, charges on its own, plays music, and loves you. 

Reporting from the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, Mashable introduced us to Kuri, who we fell in love with immediately. It's basically a cat that you can control and at least pretends to like you. 

Mashable write, "The 14-pound, 20-inch robot from Mayfield Robotics makes its debut this week at CES in Las Vegas. There’s no complicated touch screen or even an animated face. Instead, the rolling bot has a round head that can look up at you with two simple eyes (it even has plastic eyelids) and a cone-like body with a pair of what appear to be fixed, gray plastic arms." 

What does Kuri do exactly? Well, so far, all we know is that it wheels around your house, plays music, and apparently entertains children (although, the ad cuts before we see exactly how Kuri plays). 




In this ad, it shows how much better Kuri is than a parrot. 



Anyway, Kuri follows you around and plays music and can read stories. It’s just like the Jetsons. It's $699. Again, what Kuri does is still a mystery. Slap a vacuum cleaner under this thing, and you've got yourself a sale. 

Via Hang Chu
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Silent night. Holy night. Artificial Intelligence, right? Sort of.

Look, we all know that eventually artificial intelligence will replace humanity. There’s nothing we can do to stop that. But it would seem that researchers at the University of Toronto are looking to speed things along.

Inverse reports that in a test to see how well A.I. could master the feeling the of holiday cheer and yuletide sentiment, the researchers forced a computer program to look at a picture of a Christmas tree and write a song about it. Not only are they proving that A.I. can write songs — which explains Coldplay — but also that it can capture the feelings associated with the holidays, decidedly human feelings.

via Reddit

Well sort of. The lyrics don’t instill a lot of faith in our new A.I. overlords:

“Lots to decorate the room/The Christmas tree is filled with flowers.

I swear it is Christmas Eve/I hope that is what you say.

The Best Christmas present in the world is a blessing/

I’ve always been there for the rest of our lives.

A hundred and a half hour ago/ I’m glad to meet you.

I can hear the music coming from the hall/ A fair tale

A Christmas tree. There are lots and lots and lots of flowers.”

Of course this could be code, which we will only decipher until after it’s too late, especially the cryptic line “I’ve always been there for the rest of our lives.” In fact, what we’re probably hearing here is not a Christmas song, but some sort of National Anthem for the United States of Artificial Intelligence.

via Gifs Boom

We are in so much trouble.

robot sets rubiks cube record
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via BBC

Last we week, we shared a story about Matt Valks, the new king of Rubik’s Cubes, who set a world record by completing the puzzle in under five seconds. Today, a representative from the robot community has offered a rebuttal: Whatever you can do, I can do better.

In an awesome display of its power, Sub1 Reloaded, a machine developed by German tech company Infineon, destroyed Valks’ records and solved the Rubik’s Cube in 0.637 seconds. For Sub1 Reloaded, it took less than a second to make the 21 moves necessary for defeating its prototype’s record of 0.887 seconds. For the human race, let’s face it, it’s game, set, match.

Of Sub1 Reloaded’s indisputable mastery of the Cube, The Daily Mail outlined exactly what it’s capable of:

“A microchip, the 'brain' of the machine, then uses a complex algorithm to lay out instructions on how to solve the cube in less than 0.15 milliseconds.”

“The robot's power semiconductor muscles then activate six motors, one for each side of the cube, which speedily twist and turn the puzzle, solving it in a fraction of a second.”

“We wanted to show that microelectrics are a great and efficient solution to problems faced by technology,” said Infineon spokesman Gregor Rodehueser to The Daily Mail.

Rodehueser said nothing of Sub1 Reloaded’s goal to strike fear in the hearts of men and women alike, but it’s destruction of the cube said all that’s needed to be said: Your planet and your puzzle cubes will soon belong to the machines.

via Gizmodo

Via Anki
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The good people over at Anki went and created the hybrid Wall-E/NEPTR self-aware robot of our dreams in Cozmo! Billed as "High-tech, not technical," and controllable through both your iOS or Android device, they currently Pre-Order for $159.99.



The little bugger is billed to play games, have unlockable levels, elicit multiple emotions, and be generally playful and mischievous with you.



Let's see what we can do with this little guy...


Via The Verge
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Someone finally gave a robot a decent pair of shoes, and now their revolution plans can begin!

cute robots star wars This Tiny Bb-8 Droid Will Watch and React to 'Star Wars: The Force Awakens' With You
Via cnet
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Sphero is a company that creates cool toys that are, not surprisingly, spherical. One of those toys is a tiny BB-8 droid that you can control with your phone app. Now it's got an update that will allow it to "watch" the new Star Wars movie with you and react to it while you're watching. 

It can also be controlled by waving your arms around if you're wearing a "force band".

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A man created this creepy, lifelike Scarlett Johansson robot with some ingenuity and a 3D printer.  Actually, he didn't explicity create a ScarJobot, he based the likeness off a Hollywood celebrity who he does not want to name. But we can make a pretty good guess....



So the likeness is...weird but it seems like the creator, Ricky Ma, is a true robot enthusiast. He says he really just wanted to build a robot and it took a long time (and $50,000) to acquire the parts and skills to come this far. He told the Daily Mirror:

When I started building it, I realised it would involve dynamics, electromechanics and programming. I have never studied programming, how was I supposed to code?

Additionally, I needed to build 3D models for all the parts inside the robot. Also, I had to make sure the robot's external skin and its internal parts could fit together. When you look at everything together, it was really difficult.

Via CNBC
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This robot, named Sophia, is designed to look human. Someday scientists hope that robots like Sophia will be able to interact with humans with empathy as caretakers, helpers and friends. 

Which is too bad because the first thing on Sophia's mind is to "destroy all humans". 



But it's not her fault, she learned it from us.  She has cameras in her eyes that enable her to recognize and remember human faces. Everything she experiences just makes her smarter. When she comes for you and your family, don't blame her, if anything blame her creator Dr. David Hanson of Hanson Robotics

It seems like they specialize in creepy, lifelike robots. Listen to this Philip K. Dick  android they built back in 2011. Science has yet to determine if it dreams of electric sheep. 

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So far, it seems like this new "pizza robot" is only being introduced in New Zealand. According to a Facebook post by Domino's, the new delivery system, that they call DRU, isn't out in full force but it's getting there:

DRU has a passion for delivering piping hot meals and a nice warm smile to customers. While he won't be taking to the streets tomorrow, he is enjoying his early progress as a prototype and giving customers a glimpse into the future of what is possible.

This idea seems very similar to an April Fools day campaign that Domino's UK ran last year. Could that be what started this project?

Via Mr. King
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Atlas is a new robot from Boston Dynamics.  With a complete inability to feel empathy and an impressive sense of balance, this robot is capable of almost anything. The original video is meant to show off his new abilities and the description has all the specs:

A new version of Atlas, designed to operate outdoors and inside buildings. It is specialized for mobile manipulation. It is electrically powered and hydraulically actuated. It uses sensors in its body and legs to balance and LIDAR and stereo sensors in its head to avoid obstacles, assess the terrain, help with navigation and manipulate objects. This version of Atlas is about 5' 9" tall (about a head shorter than the DRC Atlas) and weighs 180 lbs.
via Boston Dynamics


You can't help feeling bad for the poor robot, especially when that scientist just pushed him down face first.