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Soft Robots

Inspired by the the octopus, engineers are creating robots that can twist their way around problems that rigid robots can’t handle. This article was reproduced with permission and was first published on February 3, 2016...

February 4, 2016 — Nature Video
What Chappie Says—and Doesn't Say—about Artificial Intelligence [Video]

What Chappie Says, and Doesn't Say, About Artificial Intelligence

I'm not a scold about scientific accuracy in film. As long as a movie is not built on a fundamentally stupid premise (“Lucy,” the Scarlet Johansson vehicle predicated on the false notion that humans use only 10 percent of their brains, comes to mind), I am happy to let myself be entertained...

March 6, 2015 — Seth Fletcher

Wireless Robot Octopus Swims With the Fishes [Video]

Robot octopuses can already walk, jet along and even grasp tools. But new advances have these machines swimming faster than ever. And thanks to the addition of soft, fleshy webs, they’re starting to look—and move—much more like the real thing, too...

September 26, 2014 — Katherine Harmon Courage
How will today’s technology change our concept of “work”?

How will today’s technology change our concept of “work”?

Change is hard. We meet it with some trepidation and skepticism. This is certainly true when it comes to technology. Each wave of technological advancement has changed the economy; and in each age where it has done so, the there has been a ripple effect...

September 2, 2014 — Krystal D'Costa
Childhood of Tomorrow: Simon Stålenhag Interview

Childhood of Tomorrow: the Art of Simon Stålenhag

Some artists find a synthesis of style and subject that causes their work to resonate deeply within us. We experience new memories and ideas while we look at their images.

August 27, 2014 — Glendon Mellow

How Lil Wayne the NYC Octopus Will Help Scientists Understand the Brain

BROOKLYN--It wasn’t hard to name Lil Wayne. He actually volunteered to take the rapper’s moniker. On April 2, Frank Grasso, director of the Biomemetic and Cognitive Robotics Lab at Brooklyn College, showed me around his lab spaces--from where they build mobile robots to where they keep their axolotls and fiddler crabs to the crown jewel: [...]..

April 3, 2014 — Katherine Harmon Courage
The Formula for Kick-Starting U.S. Manufacturing Begins with Technology

The Formula for Kick Starting U.S. Manufacturing Begins with Technology

Much of what we buy in the U.S. is not made here, and hasnt been for decades. If 2013 is any indication this could be changing, although the next generation of American manufacturing will differ greatly from its predecessor thanks to advanced technologies that rely on information rather than brawn...

December 5, 2013 — Larry Greenemeier
Octopus Suckers Have Groovy Secret for Strength

Octopus Suckers Have Groovy Secret for Strength

Octopus suckers are extraordinary. They can move and grasp objects independently. They can “taste” the water around them. They can even form a seal on rough surfaces underwater...

December 1, 2013 — Katherine Harmon Courage
Civilian Drones to Change How We Respond to Emergencies

Civilian Drones to Change How We Respond to Emergencies

You may think you know what a “drone” is. But the word  “clearly means a lot of things to a lot of different people,” according to Dean Jansen, co-director of the Drones and Aerial Robotics Conference (DARC), which took place in October...

November 25, 2013 — Julianne Chiaet
New Views into the Octopus’s Bizarre Moves

New Views Into the Octopus’s Bizarre Moves

We’ve known for centuries that octopuses get around one of two ways: one, by crawling over surfaces with their arms, or, two, swimming with the help of their siphon’s jet.

November 21, 2013 — Katherine Harmon Courage
Dog-Eared Reading (Volume 1)

Dog-Eared Reading (Volume 1)

I recently saw a clip of Neil Patrick Harris hosting the 2013 Emmys. He was doing a bit about Google Glass and said he was watching an episode of American Horror Story on his contacts while hosting the show...

September 29, 2013 — Julie Hecht
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