Robotic systems to uphold the law, or go into battle in the place of humans, being destroyed without risking (friendly) human life. This has been a dream of science fiction for decades, could it be that it is finally coming true?
A war fought with robots, death machines from land, sea and sky. All thinking on their own, not a trace of organics, save on the opposing side.
MAARS, short for Modular Advanced Armed Robotic System, is QinetiQ North America's latest product in the SWORDs line. Designed to replace the originals, which had teething problems in the war in Iraq, mainly a lack of trust in their operations.
Nature 1: Robot Insects 0
Robotic insects are wondrous tools - until they go outside. A strange article about the battle between man-made toys and military devices designed to look like insects, and the birds of prey that have a yearning for lunch.
Podcast: P.W. Singer: Military robots and the future of war
This podcast comes from TED 2009. It talks about current technologies in robotics, VR, and battlespace, being used now, in Iraq and other conflicts; about the reduction in cost, and the potential dangerous directions these trends are heading in.
1986 film Short Circuit, introduced us to the eclectic AI personality Johnny Five. Even back in the 80s, the US was envisaging the creation of robot soldiers. Short Circuit reflects this desire.
An overview of the Black Knight drone tank system, a land-based radio controlled smart robot tank designed for situations too risky to send human tank crews into.
Adding Arms to Autonomous Aircraft
A research effort intending to challenge the present limits of embodiment and aviation, by adding dexterous, strong and gentle arms, and hands to UAVs. These to be capable of operating on external objects mid-flight.
This book demonstrates how bio-inspiration can lead to fully autonomous flying robots without relying on external aids. Most existing aerial robots fly in open skies, far from obstacles, and rely on external beacons ? mainly GPS ? to localise and navigate. However, these robots are not able to fly at low altitude or in confined environments, and yet this poses absolutely no difficulty to insects. Indeed, flying insects display efficient flight control capabilities in complex environments despite their limited weight and relatively tiny brain size.
The Grand Challenge is an annual robotics contest, which first started in Autumn 2004. The task is ro assemble a group of unmanned, self-driving vehicles, and compete in an Artificial-Intelligence race over 100-150 miles of offroad course, in DARPA's drive to create robotic combat machines.
DARPA Urban Challenge 2007
Saturday, 3rd November 2007, the former George Air Force Base in California, US. Eleven teams gathered for the DARPA 2007 Urban Challenge, the third of the DARPA artificial intelligence challenges, intended to boost development of driverless, self-navigating vehicles, by seeing if they could handle urban driving. At stake, $2,000,000.
ExoFly & DelFly: Fluttering For Exploration
NASA is currently investigating the use of robot dragonflies to further explore Mars, and to use them in partnership with Rovers on other planets. The idea is tiny, winged robots, capable of hovering in place, and flitting off, could fly much further afield than land craft, and identify areas for the rovers to explore in depth, ahead of time.
Large Image Display: Animatrix: Matriculated: Flexible Design
Continuing on from the still Large Image Display: Animatrix: Matriculated: Designed to Run, this single shot looks at how the robots respond when they encounter a threat they ordinarily cannot handle. The antenna that we could see above the eye sensors in the previous shot, are now on the bottom of the robot.
Moot Court Hearing On The Petition Of A Conscious Computer
A Moot Court Hearing on the Petition of a "conscious computer" to be treated as a legal person was held at the 1st Colloquium on the Law of Transhuman Persons in Florida earlier this year. This write-up outlines in plain-form how such a case might actually go, and the issues all sides would have to consider - is an artificial being sentient?
Quadruped Robots > Big Dog
BigDog, a creation of Boston Dynamics, is the poster child for quadruped robots. A large, bulky pack-bot, it is designed to go anywhere a human soldier can go, walkingh across any terrain, with four firm feet. It can walk on almost any surface, run on those same surfaces, recover from being whacked hard when standing still or running, and carry half a tonne with every step whilst it does all this.
Quadruped Robots > LittleDog
Created by Boston Dynamics at request from DARPA, shortly after the BigDog pack mule prototype was created. LittleDog is a timid-looking four-legged robot about the size of a Chihuahua.
Quadruped Robots > The EPFL Cheetah-Cub
The Cheetah-Cub, designed by EPFL in Switzerland, is a biorobot. The very first to be designed with the same body structure as a cat. It is the first robotic feline in other words, and shares the same acceleration, extreme stability and potential nimbleness as its namesake.
The DARPA project LAGR, or Learning Applied to Ground Robots has attracted less public acclaim than the Grand Challenges which serve essentially the same function. Unlike the grand challenges however, LAGR is an attempt to develop an AI which can navigate without the aid of active sensors.
Robot unravels mystery of walking
A look at the first passive walking robot that walks like a human, rather than stomping around like a robot. Can prosthesis and avatars also benefit from this concept?
Robotic Learning Locomotion
The Learning Locomotion program by DARPA is attempting the creation of self-learning robots, with legs, not wheels, who can traverse any terrain.
SAPBER: Robotic Bomb Disposal
Robotic sniffers have been available for some time, to trundle on down to a suspected bomb and examine the site. However, whilst they can lift the bomb up, or trigger it, such robots have never been able to disarm the bombs safely, much less disarm them and preserve all evidence. That task has always taken a human bomb expert, and presents a risk to life and limb. A new bomb disposal robot is attempting to fill that gap, by interacting with the sniffer robot, and disarming the bomb itself from a safe distance.
Underwater Robots > Robojelly
Robojelly, first created by engineers at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (VirginiaTech) in 2009, is a robot jellyfish that is continuously being upgraded and refined in order to create a surveillance robot which moves through the water just like a natural jellyfish.
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How do you spot a robot mimic of a human? How do you recognise and deactivate a rebellious servant robot? How do you escape a murderous smart home? This dry humoured survival guide, written by a genuine roboticist teaches the worried how to survive a robot mutiny.
Runaway is an action Sci-Fi film. Starring Tom Selleck and Cynthia Rhodes, this production is a good romp with a fairly deep and twisting plot, centered around robotics, and a world filled with little electronic helpers, that looksand feels not too far off from now. With an interesting plotline, an enjoyable atmosphere ,and being chock full of robots without any computerised effects, runaway is a recommended watch for any, interested in the augmented world.