Robot Uprising

Welcome to the Tech News Countdown, hosted by Alison Haislip. Every Friday, Alison brings you the top 5 tech stories of the week.

In this installment, Alison brings you the top 5 robot stories of the week ending January 2nd, 2009. 

Tech News Countdown - January 2, 2009 »



Give it a watch and tell us what you think in the comments section. You can also cast your opinion in the Tech News Countdown forum.

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The GRIN (Bionic Commando, Bionic Command Rearmed) developed video game version of Terminator Salvation drops its first trailer. The game is set to be released simultaeneously with the movie in May 2009 with the platforms uncofirmed, yet speculated at a PC, PS3, and Xbox 360 at the very least.

Hrm... the Bionic Commando crew working on the legendary, cinematic Robot Uprising future? God please let this be good.

Terminator Salvation: The Videogame

Terminator Salvation: The Videogame Trailer »


Nugget From The Net


Posted November 12, 2008 - By bleahy

Taxidermy is a kind of weird and creepy, but one artist is taking it to the next level and making it cool for today's youth!

Lisa Black takes dead animals and turns them into reconstructed mechanical creations. Will they ally with the robots as foot soldiers in the future Robot Wars?

Warning: pictures of stuffed, dead animals if you care about that sort of thing.

If you're, like four, tomorrow is your lucky day! Elmo Live goes on sale in toy stores across the country. The singing, dancing and joking robot is fun, and is in no way going to become sentient and begin a ruthless war against humanity with its goofy-faced brethren.

Good luck finding them, though. Even in these depressed times, parents will be cleaning up aisles looking for them. And we predict a huge eBay market!

Seriously, though, these are just kids' toys, they are not the advance squad of the coming robot-Apocalypse.


Two photovoltaic solar power plants are planned for San Luis Obispo County in Southern California. Covering 12.5 square miles of otherwise unused desert landscape, the two new installations will create around 800 megawatts of power.

The power will be sold to Pacific Gas & Electric which is under a state mandate to incorporate renewable resources to the tune of 20% of its overall sources. PG&E is saying the costs will be competitive with thermal and wind energy prices already in action or in development.

Solar has finally arrived, people. Now if we can just install the sun in every climate in the world in abundance like it is SoCal, we'll be sound as pie or however you say that phrase.



Silicon Knights introduces us to the quaint robotic GRNDL... who by the way, eats human flesh in the action-RPG Too Human for the Xbox 360 available August 19th.

Too Human: Meet GRNDL

Too Human: Meet Grendl »

Robot Has Mouse Brain


Posted August 13, 2008 - By Stephen Johnson

Presumably mad scientists at the University of Reading have announced they've created a robot with a rat's brain. The robot/rat/abomination is powered by a network of cells taken from the brains of rodents. The cells "learn" and have formed a brain-like thing that controls the electronic and machine parts of the--thing.

Although the scientists behind the project say their creation will help us understand how neural networks form our minds, and will provide valuable information that may help victims of neurological diseases, we're pretty sure RatBot is planning some form of world domination. Or maybe it's thinking about how delicious cheese would taste, if it had a mouth.

Please. Kill it. Before it's too late!

BreitBart: A 'Frankenrobot' with a biological brain

Take a gander at the size and scope of the "Arms Forts" in Ubisoft's mech sim action game Armored Core: for Answer.  The game is set for launch September 9th for the PS3 and Xbox 360.

Click the image below for the Armored Core: for Answer image gallery

Read More »

Robots Are A-Learnin'!


Posted August 6, 2008 - By Frank Meyer

Researchers in Leipzig have invented software that allegedly allows robots to learn movement through trial and error.

The software mimics the interconnected sensing and processing of a brain via a "neural network," allowing the simulated creatures to explore.

For instance, the video demonstrations, a simulated dog learns to jump over a fence, and a humanoid learns how to get upright and do back flips. The key word here being “simulated,” as they haven’t actually made any of this happen yet. In fact, the video demo of the software looks like it was created in 1983…but I digress…

Read More »

DVD rental kiosk leader Redbox is about to get a big challenge from Blockbuster who plan to roll out 10,000 blue boxes of their own over the next 18 months.

Industry analysts expect that the DVD kiosk industry will grow substantially from $197 million last year to $760 million in 2010. We're a little more skeptical in light of ever-increasingly affordable technology in the home allowing for cheaper, faster delivery of rented material, but nobody listens to us.

Blockbuster is mum about the full business model but you can expect it's similar to Redbox which has 6,000 kiosks across the US, each with around 500 movies that rent for $1 a night. B-buster did say that they are working toward a DVD burner in the box that will allow customers to download, burn, and purchase a movie right there on the spot.

hollywoodreporter.com: Blockbuster plans 10,000 DVD rental kiosks

Paramount Pictures is finally rolling out the Blu-Ray edition of the megahit, Prime movie, Transformers, this September 2. But not only have been fans waiting for this edition, director Michael Bay has been sharing the same anticipation. In the IGN report, Bay said:

"I've been waiting for Transformers to be released on Blu-ray for a long time, and it was worth the wait. This is the complete high-definition package for fans of this film - it looks stunning and really allows you to engage with this movie in new ways. Remember, I told everyone Blu-ray is the best."

Find out why after the cut (via IGN).

Read More »


Water Found on Mars


Posted August 1, 2008 - By TylerColfax

Since surviving the 7 minutes of terror descending through the Martian atmosphere on May 25, the Phoenix Mars Lander has scooped, tested, and found water in the Red Planet's northern plains.

There were scooping issues as the samples they collected were turning into a sticky substance that was hard to get into the ovens for testing. But working around where the sun is at certain times, they've been able to deliver samples to the oven and mass spectrometers, which have led to the greatest discovery man has seen in over a week.

Seriously, though, it's pretty sweet. Beyond the fact that we can take pride in the fact that we actually did it, we can also continue to test the surface to see about sustaining plant life and maybe eventually human life.

Follow yonder link to see a nice panorama of the plains where Phoenix lies. Also, is that a PlayStation 1 on board on the left???

astronomy.com: Water found on Mars

Ak like ya'll didn't already know, but it's true, the robots are stepping it up. Check out the videos from robot masters on DiscoverMagazine.com who have managed to create a few eerily animal-like creatures.

Yep. We're screwed.

discovermagazine.com: 3 Robots That Move Just Like Animals

New AOTS Robots Arrive


Posted July 7, 2008 - By TylerColfax

Check out the gallery of the new Robots for the Attack of the Show set. There are four new bots. One of them has a tap in his chest and is only vaguely phallic as hell. Two of the other bots have flatscreen monitors for chests. All four were designed by Hollywood special effects pros and will be able to talk and do all kinds of fancy new things.

Time to say goodbye to the Army of Monitorheads. You've served us well, Privates, but it's time for you to disappear now.


Welcome to the Tech News Countdown, hosted by Alison Haislip. Every Saturday, Alison will take you through the top tech stories of the week.

This week Alison brings you the latest on Google's Lab developments and the Android mobile operating system, the record-breaking launch of the Firefox 3.0 browser, DARPA's autonomous robot challenge, claims of a revolutionary water-powered engine, and the unveiling of a 15-inch humanoid female 'love' robot.


Tech News Countdown: June 21, 2008 »


Give it a watch and tell us what you think in the comments section. You can also cast your opinion in the Tech News Countdown forum.

Subscribe to G4's Tech News Countdown Podcast by clicking your preferred service:

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