We just released our latest book: ROBOTICA: Mechanical Marvels and Mind-Melting Machines of the Past, Present, and Future. Here’s a look at the kind of stories you’ll find in ROBOTICA! Introducing the first self-made robot.
People who fear a robot uprising can be calmed down by the fact that 1) Robots aren’t yet advanced to the point where it’s even possible for them to achieve “self awareness” and hurt humans, and 2) Robots still have to be built by humans, and programmed by humans.
Never mind all that. A joint team of engineers from Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have created the world’s first ever robot that can assemble itself. According to the abstract of the article published in the August issue of Science, the team of super-geniuses took inspiration from origami, the 1,500-year-old art of paper folding. (Origami, like many robots, was created in Japan.) As origami involves folding a piece of paper—a flat surface—in such a way as to create a three-dimensional object. The engineers developed “shape-memory composites” with “embedded hinges”—in other words, thin flat sheets of paper-like material embedded with electronics (and attached to robotic components) with pre-folded lines.
The robot, following the programmers’ programming, was then able to fold themselves along those predetermined lines. The result: a robot that in just four minutes turned itself from paper and electronic stuff into a bug-like, crawling robot that moved on its own without any human interference.
All hail the robots? Click here to order ROBOTICA!