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[20 Jun 2011 | One Comment | ]
Robot Teacher Wins Kindergarten Kids’ Hearts [Video]

Earlier this year we told you about the Korean government’s plan to replace native English speaking teachers with robots in 3 to 5 years, they certainly haven’t forgotten their promise. Kindergarten classrooms are currently in the process of conducting a three week field trial of the robot KIRO and the students seem to be enjoying it.
KIRO takes an interactive approach to education, teaching students the basics such as the English alphabet with its games and educational software. These different programs can be activated by touching smart cards to the …

Featured, Gadgets, Geek Stuff, Robots »

[14 Jun 2011 | One Comment | ]
Beer Can Robot in Disguise

Check out this transforming robot beer can from Ron Tajima. This genius created a Wii-mote controlled walking bot disguised as a cold one. Probably perfect for a reconnaissance mission at a house party. Let’s just hope no one crushes it on their head.


Featured, Robots »

[2 Jun 2011 | No Comment | ]
Punching Robot by Makers of the Kid Walker Mech

Last year Sakakibara Kikai got a lot of attention for creating the Kid’s Walker; a mini-mecha that shuffles along, driven by a pint sized pilot. After getting a whole lot of internet love, the company was able to sell 8 units of the mini-mech for $21,000 USD each.
They’re back in the lab again, now designing a human piloted punching robot. Though nothing like those monstrosities in movie “Real Steel”, this bot seems faster than their previous creations. I see them being used in amusement parks, pitting patrons against each other …

Featured, Robots »

[15 May 2011 | No Comment | ]
Never Mind the Huge Floating Head, that’s My Boss [Video]

Telepresence is kinda like teleconferencing with a major upgrade. It gives the user not only the ability to have a video conversation with people thousands of miles away but also makes it possible explore and interact the environment. We’ve been seeing quite a few telepresence robots these days, even class room teachers that hope to change the language education system in Korea.
But one problem cited with telepresence bots is the issue of mobility. It can be difficult to pilot a robot around obstacles, up and down stairs or in a …

Geek Stuff, Robots »

[10 May 2011 | No Comment | ]
Robot Lightsaber Battle

An epic lightsaber battle between good and evil, Jedi and Sith.. robots. This display is thanks to Yaskawa, makers of industrial robots who decided to geek out for their exhibition at this year’s IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA) in Shanghai, China.

Kinda slow though. Wonder if I could take ’em.
source: Automaton

Featured, Robots »

[25 Mar 2011 | One Comment | ]
Robots Recruited to Help Battle Radiation Problem

Robots have joined in the fight to contain the situation at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant. As the brave employees battle to prevent a meltdown, robots have arrived to monitor the radiation levels and help clean up.

First on the scene was MoniRobo (Monitor Robot), a 52 inch tall, 1300 pound bot designed specifically for operating at lethal levels of radiation. It was developed by the Japanese Nuclear Safety Technology Center after the 1999 nuclear accident in Tokaimura which resulted in 2 deaths .
The robot is equipped with a radiation detector, …

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[9 Mar 2011 | One Comment | ]
Elfoid Portable Telepresence Robot

Here is an interesting concept; a mobile phone one that is actually a genuine android. The Elfoid is a robotic cellphone that acts as an avatar for the user on the other end of the line. This creepy looking phone aims to use a camera and a motion-tracking system to mimic the head movement and facial expression of the user.

Gadgets, Headline, Robots »

[21 Feb 2011 | One Comment | ]
This Week in Japan Tech – Feb 19

Tokyo’s “Robot & Human Concert”
Toyota recently showcased their i-REAL personal mobility vehicle and brought along their musically gifted Partner Robots to set the mood. A violin playing robot and trumpet playing robot performed with human musicians as the i-REAL was being demonstrated. Check out (wo)man and machine playing the violin in harmony.

Here’s the i-REAL in motion.

Check: PlasticPals for links to more videos.
Turn Plastic Bags to Fuel at Home

Those of us who haven’t been eco-friendly enough to carry our own bags to the supermarket, have wasted countless numbers of plastic …

Gadgets, Headline, Robots »

[14 Feb 2011 | 2 Comments | ]
This Week in Japan Tech – Feb 12

Robot Baby Head

Meet Affetto (Italian for affection), he’s a robot designed to look like a human infant of about 1 to 2 years old. Affetto is currently only a head, but researchers have put a lot of effort into his realistic facial expressions. His skin is made of soft rubber and beneath are a motors and wires attached to different points on the face. These are used the simulate different facial expressions, for example his eyebrows a can move up and down, his upper lip can protrude, his eyes move …

Gadgets, Geek Stuff, Robots »

[30 Jan 2011 | One Comment | ]
This Week in Japan Tech – Jan 29

Sony Dominated the Media
The most hype this week went to Sony with the release of a follow up to their PSP. The Internet was alive with rumors of about what features the PSP2 would have, and thanks to Sony’s presentation at Play Station Meeting 2011, we now know what to expect from “the next generation portable”, NGP.

That’s not all from Sony this week. Mock-up pictures of the “Play Station Phone” started showing up on blogs as early as August last year. Engadget finally got their hands on one. Here’s their …

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