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This Robotics Startup Wants to Be the Boston Dynamics of China

 − at 23:15, 16. Oct. 2017

Chinese startup Unitree Robotics unveils Laikago quadruped robot

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This Mind-Bending Actuator Could Make Robots Safer and More Energy Efficient

 − at 15:00, 14. Oct. 2017

Wrap your head around SRI's new actuator, based on an ultra-compact infinitely variable transmission

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Robohub Podcast #245: High-Performance Autonomous Vehicles, with Chris Gerdes

 − at 09:00, 14. Oct. 2017

In this episode, Audrow Nash interviews Chris Gerdes, Professor of Mechanical Engineering at Stanford University, about designing high-performance autonomous vehicles. The idea is to make vehicles safer, as Gerdes says, he wants to “develop vehicles that could avoid any accident that can be avoided within the laws of physics.”

In this interview, Gerdes discusses developing a model for high-performance control of a vehicle; their autonomous race car, an Audi TTS named ‘Shelley,’ and how its autonomous performance compares to ameteur and professional race car drivers; and an autonomous, drifting Delorean named ‘MARTY.’


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Video Friday: Robotic Creatures, ROS-Industrial, and Machine Knitting

 − at 22:50, 13. Oct. 2017

Your weekly selection of awesome robot videos

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In Flesh-Cutting Task, Autonomous Robot Surgeon Beats Human Surgeons

 − at 21:30, 13. Oct. 2017

The robot made more precise cuts with less tissue damage

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What CMU's Snake Robot Team Learned While Searching for Mexican Earthquake Survivors

 − at 18:50, 13. Oct. 2017

Days after a 7.1-magnitude earthquake struck Mexico City, CMU sent its snake robots in to look for survivors

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How Is a Drone Like a Dog? Ask a Cop

 − at 16:00, 13. Oct. 2017

Police see drones as key tools in law enforcement. “We are negligent if we aren’t using drones,” says one officer

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Cockroach Robot Grows Tail, Does Flips

 − at 00:00, 13. Oct. 2017

Adding a tail to a cockroach-inspired robot helps it flip itself over with ease

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Sony Bringing Back Aibo Team to Develop New Robot Dog

 − at 21:03, 10. Oct. 2017

It's been over a decade, but Sony may be releasing a new version of one of the most sophisticated consumer robots ever made

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How to Start a Tech Camp in your City in 5 steps

 − at 16:41, 10. Oct. 2017

One of the common questions parents will ask me is how did Beckwith Tech Camp get started? Like most people who suddenly appear, it takes years of practice and work to get to that point. I started literally in my basement, playing with Lego, wiring circuits together, and making matchbox cars through Scouts with a passion for all things tech. However, I was eventually given the opportunity to do something on a larger scale in my school and took off with it. I was given a box of Lego, three Ipad’s and a couple Windows-based laptops and told to go at it.


The first thing I did was put the word out in the school community we were doing this and I needed expertise. This step was the most important step in our evolution because I suddenly got introduced to a tech journalist, a man who provided 3D printers, a lady who worked as a Microsoft project manager, a woman who built robots, two guys who started their own game creation company and a lady who worked as a graphic designer. Every one of these people agreed to come to the school and do a workshop with the students and remained available to us to answer questions. Six years later, I still stay in touch and keep them updated on how things are going.

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Jelly Smeared Games


At the same time, I started volunteering in the local math competition, the local robotic tournament, the local electricity club and kept expanding the network. If you are wanting to start your own Tech Camp, build your human resource network before anything else. Through that network, I keep receiving old laptops that we convert to Chromebooks, Ipads that will run the 2-3 apps we use, Lego kits no longer being used, and funding opportunities through local Tech companies.

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Once we were up and running, I am always recruiting new people. I am always shocked at how easy is it to recruit volunteers because they see it as an opportunity to receive personal mentoring in technology. I never worry about their level of understanding, just their level of passion. If they want to be there, they will learn. And after a year, they are able to branch off and start their own club based on their passion and expertise. As you can imagine, after six years of this, we are now running four tech clubs in schools, participating in five different technology competitions, have over 250 participants, ran a three week tech camp and looking to expand to five weeks next year. The biggest shift I am seeing now is people are calling me, not me calling people.

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Enthusiast people are essential to your success


Fourth, focus on the instruction. I am a firm believer in the adage of catch a fish and feed a man for a day, teach him how to fish, feed him for a lifetime. The students must have the opportunity to learn for themselves. I will advise, guide, direct but won’t tell them how to do it. Give them the resources to learn, and they will figure it out. In today’s culture, though, do not use written instructions. Use videos, pictures, demonstrations and keep it short. Insist on lunch and breaks and change things up every 90 minutes or so.


Finally, look at your equipment. It doesn’t take much to get started. Have an activity where they are physically building something, programming something, coding something and presenting something. Use your own personal expertise to get started and build your network. To quote from Field of Dreams, if you build it through your local network, they will come. And you can count on partners like RobotShop to assist you in your endeavor!


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