Large sprawling airports in unfamiliar cities can be difficult places to find your way around. While it helps if someone can point you in the right direction, what's best is if they can actually take you where you want to go. Well, that's where Spencer comes in. "He" is a multi-lingual robot that's designed to guide travellers through airports.
As strange as it sounds, the future of skin care could involve tiny robots powered by changes in humidity. This week, a group of Seoul National University researchers shared their research into creating such devices, inspired by the slow motions of plants.
The likes of Asimo, Valkyrie and ATLAS better make some room, as there's a new humanoid robot on the block – and it looks not unlike the Gort bot from the original The Day the Earth Stood Still. It's the third version of the University of Tehran's Surena robot, and it was unveiled this Monday.
If one thing has been learned in the last half century, it's that sending astronauts into the harsh, unforgiving environment of space is both dangerous and expensive. To find a way to minimize risk and cost, NASA is sending a pair of prototype humanoid robots back to school. The space agency is giving two R5 "Valkyrie" robots to university groups at MIT and Northeastern University for advanced research and development of robotic astronauts that could act as vanguards for manned missions or as assistants for humans traveling to Mars.
Inspired by the water boatman bug, a team at the University of Bristol has created the Row-bot, a robot prototype that is designed to punt itself across the top of the water in dirty ponds or lakes, and "eat" the microbes it scoops up. It then breaks these down in its artificial stomach to create energy to power itself. In this way, it generates enough power to continuously impel itself about to seek out more bacteria to feed upon.
If you turn up to your local supermarket one day to find all of your favourite items fully stocked, you may have the slender robot sauntering up and down the aisles to thank. Announced today, Tally is an autonomous retail robot that rolls around stores making sure shelves are correctly stocked, promising to cut labor costs and lost revenue in the process.
In rock music, there's something quite captivating and magical about a power trio. The Jimi Hendrix Experience, Nirvana, Cream, ZZ Top, Living Colour ... oh wait, that last one is a four piece. And that's just what the folks behind the robotic rock group Compressorhead are now aiming for. The Berlin-based "heavy metal" bot band has turned to Kickstarter in its search for a new lead singer.
The fast developing world of robotics recently achieved another milestone when a Chinese-built four-legged robot walked its way into the Guinness Book of World Records after covering a distance of 83 miles in 54 hours, beating the record previously held by an American robot.
Amazon may be taking to the skies for robotic deliveries, but former Skype co-founders Ahti Heinla and Janus Friis are taking to the pavements. Their new startup, Starship Technologies, hopes to change the way local goods are delivered by introducing fleets of self-driving delivery robots that will short circuit the last mile.
If you were talking to someone and they blatantly shifted their attention to something else, chances are you'd have something to say about it. Most interactive robots, however, wouldn't even notice. That's why scientists at Japan's Toyohashi University of Technology have developed Talking-Ally, a robot that knows when it's being ignored.