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Monday, December 14, 2009

All work and no play

I was just reading over some of my previous posts, when I suddenly realised:

They are really boring.

Useful - I hope - to those of you who are interested in building humanoid robots, but probably not that exciting to read.

There were two reasons I decided to create this blog. Firstly, I wanted to have what I have just now decided should be called a "blogbook". This is a collection of my notes on the project of writing software for my humanoid robot, so that I can refer back to it when I forget something, or at least a space where I can get my thoughts to sit down and stay in one place. Making it avaliable online adds the important contribution of allowing other people to read about my mistakes, and how not to make them.

The second reason for starting this blog is that I find humanoid robots completely fascinating. I find that enthusiasm is contagious - everyone has a favourite science/music/drama teacher who was so passionate and dedicated to their subject that they made learning something you wanted to do. I hope that reading about my endeavours will encourage more people to learn about robots and the field of mechatronics. Perhaps you will start your own robotics project.

Up until now, most of the posts have fallen very much into the former category, so the remainder of this post is dedicated to the latter. Lets look at some cool robots!

First up, we have HINA by mujaki. I personally love this video - when I first saw it, it set my imagination on fire. All of the servos and parts are completley custom made, and it reminds me of Plum and Kotoko from Chobits. Not only does it bridge the uncanny valley most successfully, but the video demonstrates exactly why we all should want a tiny robotic servant within the next 10 years.

The red robot is an early version of Omni Zero - before he put on all that weight. I find it interesting the way that he jogs in place, which I assume is a method of getting feedback for him to have dynamic balance. The best thing about Robo-one is that it tackle's the problem of bipdeal robots so casually - for decades, the problem of humanoid robotics seemed unsolvable, but now it's progressed to the level that robots can not only walk - they can wrestle.

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