Foresight Nanotech Institute Logo
Image of nano

Archive for the 'Robotics' Category

Recent cases of 'accessible' high-tech: Open source chips & Origami robots

Posted by Stephanie C on August 22nd, 2014

Nanotech promises more commonplace access to advanced technology as material and fabrication costs fall and traditional barriers to innovation are removed. Examples are already being seen globally: more access to laptops and cell phones in developing countries, desktop 3D printers, a surge in establishment of shared-use research facilities, etc. A couple recent cases getting attention [...]

Biotech lab in the cloud lowers entry barrier to nanotech research

Posted by Jim Lewis on August 5th, 2014

With biotech fundamental to several paths to advanced nanotechnology, a way to do biotech experiments in the cloud offers small groups the chance to quickly test their ideas.

Two types of artificial muscle from nanotechnology

Posted by Jim Lewis on December 13th, 2012

One research group working with rotaxanes and another group working with carbon nanotubes have provided two very different solutions to the problem of producing motion via artificial muscles at different scales from the nano to the macro.

Humanoid robot for military showcases advances in robotics

Posted by Jim Lewis on November 7th, 2011

A prototype humanoid robot being developed for the US military mimics a wide range of human movements while retaining its balance.

Singularity University takes on advanced nanotech questions

Posted by Christine Peterson on October 25th, 2011

The Singularity University Executive Program recently took on the challenges of advanced nanotech: Nanotechnology: How should we evaluate the environmental impact of human-made machines that are too small to see? What limits should be placed on self-replicating nanodevices? What defenses should we institute against malevolent uses of such technology? These questions were asked by Marc [...]

Video of very impressive DARPA-funded quadruped robot

Posted by Jim Lewis on October 7th, 2011

In light of our continuing interest in the ways in which nanotechnology will interact with robotics and other emerging technologies, here is an update from IEEE Spectrum on the Boston Dynamics robot project. The earlier version called BigDog was cited here a few years ago, and was impressive enough. The update is a substantially improved [...]

Deadline THIS FRIDAY for early rate on Open Science Summit

Posted by Christine Peterson on September 20th, 2011

Excellent lineup of speakers again this year for the Open Science Summit, Oct. 22-23, and you can get in for only $100 if you register by this Friday:  http://opensciencesummit.com Hope to see you there!  —Christine Peterson, President, Foresight Institute

$50 off Foresight@Google Conference for Nanodot readers

Posted by Christine Peterson on May 23rd, 2011

Foresight is having our 25th anniversary conference and celebration at Google, and we want you there! Use code NANODOT for $50 off on: FORESIGHT@GOOGLE 25th Anniversary Conference Celebration & Reunion Weekend Google HQ in Mountain View, CA June 25-26, 2011 http://www.foresight.org/reunion Topics are emerging tech with special emphasis on transformative nanotech. A rockstar lineup of [...]

Willow Garage TurtleBot advances open source do-it-yourself robotics

Posted by Jim Lewis on April 18th, 2011

Willow Garage TurtleBot, an open source programmable robot with a 3D vision system, is available to preorder, starting at $500.

Will building humanlike robots promote friendly AI?

Posted by Jim Lewis on April 15th, 2011

David Hanson of Hanson Robotics argues that building humanlike robots will push the boundaries of several scientific and technical disciplines and prevent intelligent machines from becoming dangerous as they achieve true general intelligence.

Update and summary of potential applications of medical nanorobotics

Posted by Jim Lewis on January 10th, 2011

Robert A. Freitas Jr. has made available his chapter on nanorobotics from the book The Future of Aging.

Theoretical analysis of powering nanorobots with blood glucose and oxygen

Posted by Jim Lewis on November 4th, 2010

Hogg and Freitas provide a theoretical analysis of the power constraints when nanorobots rely entirely on ambient bloodstream oxygen and glucose and identify aspects of nanorobot design that significantly affect available power.

Space Manufacturing Conference: Abstracts due Aug. 16

Posted by Christine Peterson on August 4th, 2010

The Space Studies Institute will hold Space Manufacturing 14 on Oct. 30-31, 2010 at NASA Ames here in Silicon Valley.  Topics to be covered include: Session 1: Space Transportation Architecture Session 2: Closed Environment Life Support Systems Session 3: Robotics and Space Manufacturing Session 4: Extraterrestrial Prospecting Session 5: Engineering Materials from Non-Terrestrial Resources Session 6: Space [...]

Willow Garage reaches robotic milestone involving beer (video)

Posted by Christine Peterson on July 9th, 2010

Finishing off the week on a fun note, we see that robotic firm Willow Garage — of special interest to Foresight due to their emphasis on open source — has achieved an important milestone in robotics: namely, the ability for a robot to fetch a beer from the fridge and deliver it. It’s worth seeing [...]

H+ Summit “Rise of the Citizen Scientist” at Harvard

Posted by Christine Peterson on June 9th, 2010

If you can’t make it to Harvard this weekend, June 12-13, you’ll want to catch the live webcast of the H+ Summit: “Rise of the Citizen Scientist”.  No link yet, but presumably they’ll be putting it on the event homepage before it starts.  Also presumably they will post the videos somewhere for longer-term viewing. UPDATE: [...]

Industrial robot carves metal like butter (video)

Posted by Christine Peterson on April 15th, 2010

From Singularity Hub, 5 Axis Robot Carves Metal Like Butter: Industrial robots are getting precise enough that they’re less like dumb machines and more like automated sculptors producing artwork. Case in point: Daishin’s Seki5-axis mill. The Japanese company celebrated its 50th anniversary last year by using this machine to carve out a full scale motorcycle helmet [...]

Berkeley gets Willow Garage robot to fold towels: video

Posted by Christine Peterson on April 6th, 2010

Finally, the first step has been made toward the longed-for goal of a robot which can do laundry: http://singularityhub.com/2010/03/31/berkeley-gets-willow-garage-robot-to-fold-towels-simply-stunning-video/ Of course, this also gives us some idea of other formerly human-only tasks that robots are likely to take over in the next decade or two. Thanks to SingularityHub.com for bringing this to our attention.  —Chris [...]

Air jet manipulation

Posted by J. Storrs Hall on December 8th, 2009

One of the fastest-growing general areas of technology, of which robotics is just a part, is the ability to control things using increasingly sophisticated theory and algorithms, and the ability to run non-trivial simulation models as part of the control process. Consider this use of compressed air jets:   http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HkhMCCOHFmM From the report at IEEE [...]

Cryonics and Philosophy of Mind

Posted by J. Storrs Hall on December 2nd, 2009

There’s an interesting debate between Bryan Caplan and Robin Hanson on their respective blogs. Caplan writes: … Robin didn’t care about biological survival.  He didn’t need his brain implanted in a cloned body.  He just wanted his neurons preserved well enough to “upload himself” into a computer. To my mind, it was ridiculously easy to [...]

Reynolds advocates faster nano/AI R&D for safety reasons

Posted by Christine Peterson on November 19th, 2009

In Popular Mechanics, longtime Foresight friend Prof. Glenn Reynolds looks at the future of nanotech and artificial intelligence, among other things looking at safety issues, including one call that potentially dangerous technologies be relinquished.  He takes a counterintuitive stance, which we’ve discussed here at Foresight over the years: But I wonder if that’s such a [...]