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Sensor sleeve
Graduate student Moritz Graule demonstrates a fabric arm sleeve with embedded sensors. The sensors detect the small changes in the Graule’s forearm muscle through the fabric. Such a sleeve could be used in everything from virtual reality simulations and sportswear to clinical diagnostics for neurodegenerative diseases like Parkinson’s Disease. Credit: Oluwaseun Araromi/Harvard SEAS

By Leah Burrows / SEAS communications

Newly engineered slinky-like strain sensors for textiles and soft robotic systems survive the washing machine, cars and hammers.

Socially Intelligent Machines Lab at the University of Texas at Austin         


interview by   -   December 2, 2020

In this episode, our interviewer Lauren Klein speaks with Kim Baraka about his PhD research to enable robots to engage in social interactions, including interactions with children with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Baraka discusses how robots can plan their actions across multiple modalities when interacting with humans, and how models from psychology can inform this process. He also tells us about his passion for dance, and how dance may serve as a testbed for embodied intelligence within Human-Robot Interaction.

Ever wondered what’s been happening for the roboticists featured in our annual Women in Robotics lists?

by   -   November 28, 2020
James Bruton with openDog V2
James Bruton with openDog V2

What if you could ride your own giant LEGO electric skateboard, make a synthesizer that you can play with a barcode reader, or build a strong robot dog based on the Boston Dynamics dog robot? Today sees the start of a new series of videos that focuses on James Bruton’s open source robot projects.

Autonomous car identifying objects on the road
If robots could learn from watching demonstrations, your self-driving car could learn how to drive safely by watching you drive around your neighborhood. Photo/iStock.

By Caitlin Dawson

USC researchers have developed a method that could allow robots to learn new tasks, like setting a table or driving a car, from observing a small number of demonstrations.

Robots are rolling out into the real world and we need to meet the emerging challenges in responsible fashion but one that doesn’t block innovation. At the recent ARM Developers Summit 2020 I shared my suggestions for five practical steps that we could undertake at a regional, national or global level as part of the Five Laws of Robotics presentation (below).

by   -   November 24, 2020

Davide Scaramuzza

A few days ago, Robotics Today hosted an online seminar with Professor Davide Scaramuzza from the University of Zurich. The seminar was recorded, so you can watch it now in case you missed it.

On Friday the 13th of November, Talking Robotics hosted an online talk with PhD student Natalia Calvo from Uppsala University in Sweden. Now you can watch the recorded seminar.

by   -   November 23, 2020
Mechanical metamaterials
CBA researchers have created four different types of novel subunits, called voxels (a 3D variation on the pixels of a 2D image). Left to right: rigid (grey), compliant (purple), auxetic (orange), chiral (blue). Image credits: Benjamin Jenett, CBA

By David L. Chandler

Researchers at MIT’s Center for Bits and Atoms have created tiny building blocks that exhibit a variety of unique mechanical properties, such as the ability to produce a twisting motion when squeezed. These subunits could potentially be assembled by tiny robots into a nearly limitless variety of objects with built-in functionality, including vehicles, large industrial parts, or specialized robots that can be repeatedly reassembled in different forms.

by , and   -   November 22, 2020


“Fearless Girl should provide the spark to inspire more female engineers”, writes Elizabeth Croft, Dean and Faculty of Engineering at Monash University.

“Girls are natural engineers, highly capable in maths and physics. We need to show them that these tools can be used to design a better world.So far, we’ve done a poor job of communicating to girls the very powerful impact they can make through an engineering career.” Croft continues, providing us with the inspiration to introduce the second of our new series of Women in Robotics Updates, featuring Elizabeth Croft, Helen Greiner and Heather Knight from our first “25 women in robotics you need to know about” list in 2013.

by and   -   November 21, 2020

European Robotics Week 2020 (ERW2020) began on Thursday and hundreds of interactive robotics events for the public have been announced. These will take place in countries across Europe and beyond, to show how robots will impact the way we work, live, and learn.

BiR-IROS

The 2020 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS) has teamed up with Black in Robotics (website, Twitter) to release a new special series named BiR-IROS: Black in Robotics with the support of Toyota Research Institute. This series consists of three short but powerful videos of roboticists giving personal examples of why diversity matters in robotics, showcasing their research and explaining what got them into robotics.


Are you curious about the people behind the robots? The 2020 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS) features a new Original Series called Real Roboticist hosted by Sabine Hauert, President of Robohub and faculty at University of Bristol.

by , and   -   November 16, 2020

In spite of the amazing contributions of women in the field of robotics, it’s still possible to attend robotics conferences or see panels that don’t have a single female face. Let alone seeing people of color represented! Civil rights activist Marian Wright Edelman said that “You can’t be what you don’t see”. Women in Robotics was formed to show that there were wonderful female role models in robotics, as well as providing an online professional network for women working in robotics and women who’d like to work in robotics. We’re facing an incredible skill shortage in the rapidly growing robotics industry, so we’d like to attract newcomers from other industries, as well as inspiring the next generation of girls. Introducing the first of our new series of Women in Robotics Updates, featuring Sarah Bergbreiter, Aude Billard and Cynthia Breazeal from our first “25 women in robotics you need to know about” list in 2013.

interview by   -   November 15, 2020

 

In this episode, Shihan Lu interviews Jivko Sinapov, Assistant Professor in the Computer Science Department at Tufts University, about his work on behavior-grounded multisensory perception and exploration in robotics. Dr. Sinapov discusses several perspectives on multisensory perception in robotics, including data collection, data fusion, and robot control and planning. He also shares his experience about using robotics for K-12 education.

Embodied Interactions: from Robotics to Dance
December 2, 2020

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