Aug 02 2018

Build Your Own Mars Curiosity Rover Robot

Mars Curiosity Rover
ZDNet reports that NASA‘s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) has released plans for folks to make their own mini version of the Mars Curiosity Rover.

JPL has released designs and instructions on the now Microsoft-owned GitHub for building the mini rover that presumably will be mostly Earth-bound, rather than roaming over Mars or any other planet, unless you’re buddies with Elon Musk.

JPL released the instruction kit to show that it actually does take a rocket scientist to build one of these, but that those skills can also be learned by hobbyists and students.

“One would rightfully assume it takes expertise in mechanical engineering, software development, and electronics to even begin to construct such a complex robot,” JPL says in its announcement.

“Now students, hobbyists, and enthusiasts can learn about these skills and get a taste of what it is like to construct such a rover using plans and instructions from JPL’s Open Source Rover Project.”

In other words, this isn’t one of those tin can robot kits, because it’s from, like, NASA. But even if it isn’t something you can knock out in an hour, it’s still pretty cool of them to release it to the wild.

tin can robot

Also cool: the project is Raspberry Pi-based.

It won’t be cheap – the cost should be around $2500. But remember, we’re talking about a mini Mars Rover. You thought maybe it should be under ten dollars?

Source: ZDNet

Jul 10 2013

Gizmodo Writer Tries Bionic Leg (Video)

Gizmodo writer Brent Rose wins the Internet for the day. He tried out a bionic leg.

Really. He did. There’s even video.

Cool, right? I didn’t read the entire article, but here are a few nifty bionic tidbits: Read more »

Sep 07 2012

Bow To Your Soccerbot Overlords, Eventually

Among the many things our children will likely see in their lifetimes is fully functioning robots that can do more than simply clean our floors. Whether or not we parents will see such things depends upon both the pace of technology and how old we are. I’m old enough to be in the “maybe, maybe not” category.

According to this video from TheVerge of RoboCup 2012, I’m leaning towards “maybe not” for me being forced to fight the T-1000. The video features “the world’s best soccer robots [battling] it out in Mexico City for the Louis Vuitton Best Humanoid trophy”.

Best Humanoid Trophy. Kind of Orwellian, no?

Here’s the video.

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Video: Real steel: the broken necks and baby steps of RoboCup 2012 (video) | The Verge.