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Walking HECTOR Robot Inspired By Stick Insect

CmdrTaco posted more than 3 years ago | from the doomed-by-magnifying-glass dept.

Robotics 46

Zothecula writes "In an effort to understand how animals move elegantly and in turn provide robots with the same ability, researchers at the University of Bielefeld's Center of Excellence 'Cognitive Interaction Technology' (CITEC) have developed the hexapod walking robot called HECTOR (Hexapod Cognitive autonomously Operating Robot). Designed within CITEC's multi-disciplinary Mulero project, the robot possesses the scaled up morphology of a stick insect and will be used as a test bed in various departments and projects at the University."

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Take This (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35855928)

HECTOR [youtube.com] !!

Yours In Texass,
Kilgore Trout

I want one! (1)

TheDarkMaster (1292526) | more than 3 years ago | (#35855966)

1) Where I can buy one?
2) Can be controlled by USB or radio link?
3) Can be equipped with solid-state kilowatt-class lasers?
4) Can deal with my neighbors?
5) A optional rocket launcher interface would be useful

Re:I want one! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35856058)

1) Where I can buy one?

2) Can be controlled by USB or radio link?

3) Can be equipped with solid-state kilowatt-class lasers?

4) Can deal with my neighbors?

5) A optional rocket launcher interface would be useful

6) Can it be converted to a dick insect?

Re:I want one! (1)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 3 years ago | (#35856224)

1) Where I can buy one?

2) Can be controlled by USB or radio link?

3) Can be equipped with solid-state kilowatt-class lasers?

4) Can deal with my neighbors?

5) A optional laser would be useful

FTFY

Re:I want one! (1)

TheDarkMaster (1292526) | more than 3 years ago | (#35859428)

Why two lasers (see option 3)? You need to have anti-aircraft lasers too? :)

Re:I want one! (1)

amicusNYCL (1538833) | more than 3 years ago | (#35856822)

I see you've played Earth 2150 too. That thing looks just like a Spider chassis. Plasma or rockets are your choice, or machine guns if you're poor, and some shields would be nice too.

Re:I want one! (1)

Phoghat (1288088) | more than 3 years ago | (#35867990)

They're not exactly the same but you can go over to The Make Magazine Maker Shed Store [makershed.com] and buy a kit to make The Inchworm [makershed.com] or the Twitchie Scorpion [makershed.com] I'm sure that you'll find that things such as 1 Kw lasers or ground to ground missiles might be optional.

Somebody call the Justice League (2)

Drakkenmensch (1255800) | more than 3 years ago | (#35855974)

Looks like Luthor reactivated the Heart of Darkness.

that's gay (0, Troll)

z-j-y (1056250) | more than 3 years ago | (#35856054)

3 minutes of video, 0 seconds showing robot walking.

fag.

Re:that's gay (2)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 3 years ago | (#35856462)

that's gay

3 minutes of video, 0 seconds showing robot walking.

fag.

Shouldn't you be making these comments on Youtube instead of Slashdot?

Re:that's gay (1)

mortonda (5175) | more than 3 years ago | (#35857598)

that's gay

3 minutes of video, 0 seconds showing robot walking.

fag.

Shouldn't you be making these comments ... NEVER

FTFY

Re:that's gay (1)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 3 years ago | (#35857710)

Conceeded.

Re:that's gay (1)

Thing 1 (178996) | more than 3 years ago | (#35866580)

I have to add, though, that I found the juxtaposition of your asking these comment not to be made here, and your signature, to be rather amusing.

Re:that's gay (1)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 3 years ago | (#35873360)

Ha! Well in the missing context, we were discussing browsing on a compromised OS.

Re:that's gay (1)

Thing 1 (178996) | more than 3 years ago | (#35876380)

So now it's even funnier. Thanks!

Re:that's gay (1)

Thing 1 (178996) | more than 3 years ago | (#35876390)

And on an immediate re-inspection it's even funnier than I had thought, because you are quoting yourself. (And we wonder why people sometimes tell us "whoosh"...)

Re:that's gay (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35859244)

If you'd kept the fag part to your bigoted self I would have given you a +1 insightful for being the first to point out this - admittedly obvious - part instead of the -1 troll you got instead.

Have a nice day.

Me, to the University of Bielefeld (1)

PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) | more than 3 years ago | (#35856060)

Me: "So, what's your kink?"

University of Bielefeld: "We're into sticks."

Anyone in robotics want to explain to me... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35856062)

...why these robots always use motors? Animals don't use motors. Bugs don't use motors. Can't we make some sort of substance that contracts when an electrical charge is applied to it, like an actual muscle?

Re:Anyone in robotics want to explain to me... (1)

Predius (560344) | more than 3 years ago | (#35856108)

Um... that's one of the things they're exploring with this bot according to the article and video. They have 'elastic joint motors' that are supposed to act like muscles.

Re:Anyone in robotics want to explain to me... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35856144)

Alright, guess I'll RTFA instead of just looking at the pics...

Re:Anyone in robotics want to explain to me... (1)

mangu (126918) | more than 3 years ago | (#35856376)

Can't we make some sort of substance that contracts when an electrical charge is applied to it, like an actual muscle?

So far, no, we cannot.

That's the biggest hurdle against efficient general purpose robots, IMHO. Such a substance would need to be low cost, efficient in its use of energy, compact in size, and have similar mechanical properties to muscle, which means produce the same force over the same distance.

Electrical actuators are expensive, consume too much power, are too weak. Hydraulic actuators are too bulky, they need pumps, valves, and other complex infrastructure. They are good for large machines, such as excavators, but no one has created efficient hydraulic systems compact enough to be used in small robots.

Re:Anyone in robotics want to explain to me... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35858272)

Can't we make some sort of substance that contracts when an electrical charge is applied to it, like an actual muscle?

So far, no, we cannot.

Actually, we can. 5 seconds on Google would have pointed you towards Electroactive Polymers [wikipedia.org] , which although not quite there are pretty much exactly what the parent is describing.

Please, spend more than 5 seconds on research (1)

mangu (126918) | more than 3 years ago | (#35858534)

5 seconds on Google would have pointed you towards Electroactive Polymers

If you had read a little bit more [wikipedia.org] you would have found that "The human opponent was Panna Felsen, a straight-A high school student from the San Diego school district with an interest in robotics. She beat all three robotic contenders easily, one in just three seconds."

It took you five seconds to find out about electroactive polymers, it took a girl three seconds to beat robots built with those...

No, I repeat, up to this date there is NO decent substitute for muscle that is, at the same time, cheap, strong, and compact.

Re:Please, spend more than 5 seconds on research (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35859522)

It took you five seconds to find out about electroactive polymers, it took a girl three seconds to beat robots built with those...

A witty retort, but that wasn't the issue raised in the question. The question was:

Can't we make some sort of substance that contracts when an electrical charge is applied to it, like an actual muscle?

No-one said anything about human-level strength.

Re:Please, spend more than 5 seconds on research (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35859856)

As the original poster, you are correct that I never explicitly stated "human-level strength". However, my intention behind the question was basically in that realm. Weak muscles are pointless for my iRobot movie vision of how robots should work. Yes, I'm an ignorant lazy internet user. So what? People ask me dumb questions all the time about my realm of expertise. Get over it.

Re:Anyone in robotics want to explain to me... (2)

Hijacked Public (999535) | more than 3 years ago | (#35856628)

I absolutely agree 100%.

Since we* can't make the absolute best conceivable robot that anyone can imagine we should make no robots at all. And they should be bulletproof and able to pass through solid objects and turn invisible.

* by we we mean specifically robotics engineers since the rest of us just complain on the internet and read science fiction

Satern 3 (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35856086)

Ooooh!

Does he get to ogle Farrah Fawcett and tangle with Kirk Douglas?

NOM NOM NOM

Member when car radio buttons pulled out to set? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35856096)

Member that?

No wonder Robert Redford couldn't decode their nam (1)

HoldmyCauls (239328) | more than 3 years ago | (#35856100)

He was spelling it wrong! Citec Astronomy, then. Now, what does that decode to...?

Nice Art Installation. (2, Insightful)

Sitnalta (1051230) | more than 3 years ago | (#35856166)

Wow, the paint job and vacuum-molded parts are amazing. This is truly a piece of contemporary art. I like how it speaks to the University of Bielefeld's futile desire to build a working robot.

Re:Nice Art Installation. (1)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 3 years ago | (#35856268)

Wow, the paint job and vacuum-molded parts are amazing. This is truly a piece of contemporary art. I like how it speaks to the University of Bielefeld's futile desire to build a working robot.

Sure looks more professional than the goofy dancing robot from japan. I'm more likely to favor a spider for a robot than an insect, spiders get into everything. Those extra legs work pretty well in the front for exploring, testing, etc.

Undoubtably, though, the true test of a robot is What does it do when it finds itself on its back?

Let's see it walk (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35856176)

No where in the video of this walking robot does it actually walk.

Towards the end, there is some sluggish, jerky movement of a single leg 'walking' though.

How exciting!

Irony? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35856228)

The google ad directly below the video was for Ortho Bug-B-Gone. Should we be preparing?

how is this compared with A-Pod? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35856470)

Didn't see any moving robot, just a lazy leg. Check this A-Pod: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GDaNkff5Yyg

They should develop one called Achilles... (1)

nitsew (991812) | more than 3 years ago | (#35856766)

It would be fun to watch them battle it out.

Autonomous
Cognitive
Hexapod
Integrated... something something. [They were never really specific on which Homer they were talking about]

Re:They should develop one called Achilles... (1)

wierd_w (1375923) | more than 3 years ago | (#35857660)

That would be the optional head mounted laser system.

Autonomous
Cognitive
Hexapod
Intgrated
Laser
Light
Emission
Subsystem

boooring (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35856840)

My kids could have made a better presentation with Mindstorms and a bag of kapla.

I'm sure those guys are excellent engineers and all of that, but why oh why did they fail to show the robot in action?

Re:boooring (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35857960)

a bag of Qapla'.

Spelling fix.

It would be nice if it worked! (2, Insightful)

rMortyH (40227) | more than 3 years ago | (#35856976)

Did anyone else notice that it DOESN'T MOVE?

Nice 2:45 video with the usual pornography-inspired music track, but no movement. No 'Robot in action', just a disembodied leg on a treadmill.

Not to knock these guys too much, this is really typical of the robot industry right now. You go to a robot show or conference, and all the 'state of the art' robots are sitting there completely lifeless and no one has "permission from management" to turn them on.

Come on guys, if the industry is going to go anywhere you're going to have to ignore your lawyers and put the batteries in! Otherwise, how do we know you're not bluffing?

Re:It would be nice if it worked! (2)

amliebsch (724858) | more than 3 years ago | (#35857974)

They don't want to reveal any protected IP until their patent on walking is approved.

Hector? Do not program using "direct input"! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35858082)

Or at least, make sure none of the programmers have any psychopathic tendencies.

Re:Hector? Do not program using "direct input"! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35858594)

If he runs amok, just lie down and take a blue.

Not exactly new (1)

Nimatek (1836530) | more than 3 years ago | (#35858434)

It's a bit amusing how everyone in the video is acting as if this is a major achievement in robotics and a really fascinating research experiment, while everyone and their mom have been building hexapods for years. Examples: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=msaWXY3OuQQ [youtube.com] http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Soq9qpK5Ac [youtube.com] http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9MC3IkTxBTU [youtube.com] http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4oXuSXCKJeY [youtube.com]

Re:Not exactly new (1)

pauljlucas (529435) | more than 3 years ago | (#35859212)

I think the distinction they're making is that the new robot is autonomous.

They showed the robot working normally... (1)

Krokus (88121) | more than 3 years ago | (#35861944)

It's autonomous. It just has no life goals and robot conventions just make it sleepy. Waking it up just makes it grouchy.

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