Running cockroaches start to recover from being shoved sideways before their dawdling nervous system kicks in to tell their legs what to do, researchers have found. These new insights on how biological systems stabilize could one day help engineers design steadier robots and improve doctors' understanding of human gait abnormalities.
Humanity came one step closer in January to being able to replicate itself, thanks to the EU's approval of funding for the Human Brain Project. Danica Kragic, a robotics researcher and computer science professor at KTH Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm, says that while the prospect of living among humanoid robots calls to mind terrifying scenarios from science fiction, the reality of how humans cope with advances in robotics will be more complex, and subtle.
The strong, flapping flight of bats offers great possibilities for the design of small aircraft, among other applications. By building a robotic bat wing, Brown researchers have uncovered flight secrets of real bats: the function of ligaments, the elasticity of skin, the structural support of musculature, skeletal flexibility, upstroke, downstroke.
Scientists from the University of Lincoln and Newcastle University have created a computerised system which allows for autonomous navigation of mobile robots based on the locust's unique visual system.
The ability to track wildlife in natural environments while remaining undetected poses many technological challenges. The goal of CSIRO's "robotic stealthy tracking" project, however, is to directly address these challenges.
Taking a different approach to Google's self-driving cars, Oxford University has come up with a new autonomous car, which can drive itself, interact safely with other road users and can use roads efficiently.
Autodesk, Inc., a leader in 3D design, engineering and entertainment software, has partnered with The LEGO Group to provide 3D interactive building instructions for LEGO MINDSTORMS EV3, a new platform designed to introduce a younger generation to the excitement of building and programming robots.