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Autonomous

We've heard a lot of chatter about autonomous vehicles over the past several years and seen a variety of hardware. So far, most autonomous cars are rough, experimental versions of current models, with all kinds of added sensor hardware. The recent Geneva Motor Show flipped the autonomous vehicle inside out, showcasing several futuristic design studies that peeked inside the car cabin of the future. Read More
After providing a sneak peek of the vehicle last month, Subaru has now fully revealed its Viziv 2 Concept, at the Geneva Motor Show. The four-door crossover hatchback hybrid builds upon ideas previously presented in the Viziv Concept, which debuted at last year's event. Taking its name from an amalgamation of the words "Vision for Innovation," it's intended to combine eco-friendliness with spirited performance. Read More
Rinspeed, the Swiss company known for pushing the limits of vehicle modifications, is set to debut a new concept at the Geneva Motor Show next month. This time, the victim/vehicle to undergo the Rinspeed knife is none other than a Tesla Model S. But rather than just adding aero-bits and altering the wheels, the company has transformed the luxury electric saloon into a completely new autonomous concept called the XchangE. Read More
Researchers at Harvard University have taken inspiration from the swarm construction method used by termites to create TERMES. These robots are intended as the first step in a project with the ultimate goal of creating a fully automated robotic workforce that can create complex structures without the need for centralized control. Read More
The string of disastrous floods currently plaguing Britain demonstrate that managing rivers and other waterways is about more than protecting curlew nests and counting otters. To help provide a better understanding of riverine areas, a team headed by José Barata and Pedro Santana of the University of Lisbon are developing a “marsupial” robotic system called Riverwatch that teams a robotic catamaran with an on-board hexacopter to survey areas beyond the reach of the hip-boots and rubber raft brigade. Read More

In a recent flight test in Australia, a Scan Eagle UAV (unmanned aerial vehicle) succeeded in visually identifying an approaching Cessna aircraft, and letting its own ground-based operators know that evasive action was required. It's being hailed as a major step towards the allowance of UAVs in commercial airspace. Read More

Because of bees' small size, maneuverability and almost machine-like swarm mentality, it shouldn't come as a surprise that scientists are developing tiny flying robots based on the insects. In order to navigate autonomously, however, those robots' artificial bee brains will have to be capable of identifying objects in their environment, and reacting accordingly. Well, thanks to research recently conducted in Berlin, they may soon be able to do so. Read More
There’s more to putting self-driving cars on the road than technology and algorithms. There’s also some very basic thinking that needs to be done as to what autonomous vehicles are and what their implications are. Towards this end, Volkswagen has announced the start of Automated Driving Applications & Technologies for Intelligent Vehicles (AdaptIVe); a 42-month project by a consortium of 29 partners, including ten major automotive manufacturers, aimed at developing more efficient and safer autonomous systems. Read More
A network and repository of data, where robots can share and learn from each other about the tasks they perform, has been demonstrated at the Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e). The project is the culmination of four years of research by scientists from TU/e, Philips, ETH Zürich, TU München and the universities of Zaragoza and Stuttgart. Read More
Aerial drones, whether they be dropping bombs, books or burritos, have attracted a certain degree of controversy in recent times. While the potential of the technology is plain to see, many aren't convinced that the benefits will outweigh the risks associated with unmanned vehicles zipping about in the sky above. With its recent field testing of an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) designed to protect an ailing rhino population, Airware is determined to help the industry shed some of these negative connotations. Read More