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Robots Using Environment Objects as Tools

“Robots Using Environment Objects as Tools: The ‘MacGyver’ Paradigm for Mobile Manipulation,” by Mike Stilman, Can Erdogan, Saul Reynolds-Haertle, Munzir Zafar, Peng Hou, and Gregory Tracy from Georgia Tech, presented at ICRA 2014 in Hong Kong.  

Tengu, the Lip-Syncing USB Robot

IEEE Spectrum editor Phillip Ross shows off his new favorite office toy, Tengu. Tengu’s not cheap (he’ll set you back $50) but he does have 8 different faces to mock you with when you speak.  

Vernor Vinge: How to Prepare for the Singularity

Sci-fi author Vernor Vinge talks about the run-up to a technological singularity and what we can do to engineer the best outcome for humans. The interview is part of IEEE Spectrum’s Singularity Special Report:   In the report, Vinge also updates his ideas in an article called “Signs of the Singularity”:  

Lasers In Your Living Room

Mitsubishi hopes their new LaserVue TVs will give LCD and Plasma screens a run for their money. The screens use three lasers to scan the screen at 1080p. The main sacrifice is depth-the TV’s are about ten inches thick. IEEE Spectrum caught up with Mitsubishi at NYC’s Digital Experience in July.  

NI Week 2009 Highlights

A little bit of everything from National Instruments Week: robots that solve a Rubik’s Cube, play the knife/hand game, and musical instruments; a blended phone that catches on fire; and an automated system to sort your beer bottles.  

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