Researchers at Harvard have made amazing progress in the field of soft robotics. Their creepy crawling creation is untethered and self-containted, carrying its processors, control system and batteries on its back. The robot’s body is made of highly durable silicone, with a kevlar bottom layer. The limbs can be run over by a car without issue. This is big step in robotics modeled by biology, and I look forward to seeing how this technology develops. Check out the video below. For more information, refer to this Harvard Gazette article, or their submission to the research journal Soft Robotics.
I’m technically on a vacation day, but our trip didn’t work out. I’ve still been on a computer (at home, in my study), ignoring the gorgeous weather, but I’ve been lost in Photoshop and Illustrator while sprucing up the boyfriend’s website. There’s a parallel universe out there where I have a lucrative career in design.
Speaking of universes, there’s an article on the very, very, very beginning of ours, we’re a step closer to the Robot Apocalypse thanks to the hard work of MIT, and old pagan myths from Ireland are the best thing to listen to on St Patrick’s day. Also, the kitten below terrifies the boyfriend.
MIT News: Soft robotic fish moves like the real thing
“All of our algorithms and control theory are pretty much designed with the idea that we’ve got rigid systems with defined joints,” says Barry Trimmer, a biology professor at Tufts University who specializes in biomimetic soft robots. “That works really, really well as long as the world is pretty predictable. If you’re in a world that is not — which, to be honest, is everywhere outside a factory situation — then you start to lose some of your advantage.”
Youtube: The Story of Cuchulain
One of my favorite old Irish myths, read by Ronnie Drew.
LiveScience: 11 Surprising Facts About the Reproductive System
I find bird reproduction to be very strange.
Wired: Cosmologists Finally Capture an Elusive Signal From the Beginning of Time
“Detecting this signal is one of the most important goals in cosmology today.”