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University students experiment with human-robot interaction and autonomous manipulation, two elements of manufacturing’s future. Nikolaus Correll, CC BY-ND

America’s manufacturing heyday is gone, and so are millions of jobs, lost to modernization. Despite what Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin might think, the National Bureau of Economic Research and Silicon Valley executives, among many others, know it’s already happening. And a new report from PwC estimates that 38 percent of American jobs are at “high risk” of being replaced by technology within the next 15 years. The ConversationBut how soon automation will replace workers is not the real problem. The real threat to American jobs will come if China does it first.

Imagine a future where self-driving cars, trains and buses are all seamlessly connected through an app, where traffic jams are a thing of the past and redundant car parks have been turned into green spaces. This could be the world we live in by 2030, says Cathis Elmsäter-Svärd, Chairwoman of Drive Sweden and a member of the Global Future Council on Mobility, in this interview.

by   -   January 19, 2017
Image: Wheat Genetics and Germplasm Improvement
Image: Wheat Genetics and Germplasm Improvement

I’ve long believed that Augmented Reality (AR) and robotics are closely related. Both model their environments to some degree. Robotics uses that model to guide the behavior of a machine, whereas AR uses it to provide an enhanced sensory experience to a human.

Romy Mueller interviews Raheeb Muzaffar who has developed a framework that improves the transmission of videos between moving drones and mobile devices at ground level.

by   -   February 22, 2016

Last week Raffaello D’Andrea, professor at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH Zurich) and founder of Verity Studios, demonstrated a whole series of novel flying machines live on stage at TED2016: From a novel Tail-Sitter (a small, fixed-wing aircraft that can optimally recover a stable flight position after a disturbance and smoothly transition from hover into forward flight and back), to the “Monospinner” (the world’s mechanically simplest flying machine, with only a single moving part), to the “Omnicopter” (the world’s first flying machine that can move into any direction independent of its orientation and its rotation), to a novel fully redundant quadrocopter (the world’s first, consisting of two separate two-propeller flying machines), to a synthetic swarm (33 flying machines swarming above the audience).

by and   -   July 26, 2015
Joseph F. Engelberger, Ars Electronica Symposium 1996. Image courtesy of Ars Electronica.
Joseph F. Engelberger, Ars Electronica Symposium 1996. Image courtesy of Ars Electronica.

“Happy Birthday!” to industrial robotics pioneer Joe Engelberger who turns 90 today, July 26. That also means that robotics as an industry is around 60 years old. Joe Engelberger and Georges Devol formed Unimation, the world’s first robotics company in 1956 and the first Unimate arm was installed in General Motors in 1961, transforming the automotive industry. Today the robotics industry is a multibillion dollar business. While the automotive industry is still the largest piece of the robotics pie, the range of commercial uses for robotics is expanding into many of the service areas Engelberger also pioneered decades ago.

future-home-robot-technology-ideas
Tjin Van Der Zant helped found “Robocup at Home” in 2006, and since then the organization has spread to include a number of new locations everywhere from Brazil to Thailand. As a professor at the University of Groningen in the Cognitive Robotics Lab, and founder of a Robotics startup and machine learning startup – he’s pretty “involved” when it comes to robots – and it made me eager to pick his brain about the future of home robotics.

by   -   September 25, 2013

My name is Jaidyn Edwards. I am eighteen years old and live in South Australia. For me, being interested in robotics was part of an evolutionary process built upon a few core interests I had as a child.

My interest in mechanical things came about from the age of five. I distinctly remember carrying around a little sketchbook with a pencil everywhere I went. Whenever I had an idea for something, I would draw a picture in a page of the book, maybe writing a word or two on what it was.

ishiguroThe second interview of this four-part series about collaboration between academia and industry was conducted at the CITEC Summer School 2012 at the Center of Excellence “Cognitive Interaction Technology”, Bielefeld University in Germany. Sascha Griffiths, member of the ECHORD team at TUM interviewed Hiroshi Ishiguro, who is famous for his humanoids with lifelike appearance. Prof. Ishiguro is ATR fellow and director of the Intelligent Robotics Laboratory at Osaka University.

by   -   February 12, 2013

Robohub - PR2 waving

So, depending on who you ask, Willow Garage is shutting down, pursuing commercial interests, or changing direction. But things are not as dire as some may think: ROS is fine (the OSRF will support it) and there are many options for Willow Garage to explore. Personally I’m hoping it will be snatched up by Stanford or another academic institution and become a research institute. But given the number of robots they have out (and their price tags!), a commercial path into the future seems even more likely. In any case, I doubt that Willow Garage will disappear just like that.

What caused the changes is that Willow’s founder and funder, Scott Hassan, has decided that it’s time to wean Willow Garage from his private financial support.

by   -   February 4, 2013

Raffaello DAndrea Quadrocopter2

During the 20 minute presentation, Raffaello D’Andrea revealed some of the key concepts behind his group’s impressive demonstrations of quadrocopters juggling, throwing and catching balls, dancing, and building structures – and illustrated them with live examples with quadrocopters flying on stage.



Biowatch: Biometric Identification Using Veins
August 5, 2017


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