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Robot Uprising

In the future, your house will know where you are at all times. Yeah we don't like the sound of that either.

Gregory Abowd, a computer scientist at the Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta, is working on a computer program that can track your movements within your home by following the electronic noise made in your power grid by your use of light switches and small appliances. Up until now, concepts for smart homes had to include cameras or micorphones to track your movements, both of which have draw backs. Abowd's program can plug directly into a wall socket and determin which room of the house you're in by finding where particular appliaces are in use, while ignoring power draining items that are generally left on, like ceiling fans.

I for one, welcome our future robot overlords, and promise not to leave the bathroom light on anymore. Check out the full article.

Heart Muscle Powers Robot

bleahy
4 Comments

Posted September 4, 2007 - By bleahy

South Korean researchers have just unknowingly enabled the coming robot uprising. They have developed a microscopic robot that is powered by heart muscle cells.

The itsy-bitsy E-shaped robot is powered by "growing heart muscle tissue from a rat onto tiny robotic skeletons made from polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS)," which moves its legs by "relaxing and contracting of heart muscle cells."

They see the robot crawling through clogged arteries to clean them, but TheFeed knows better. One day all of humanity will wake up with robots in their hearts and murder on their minds.

Engadget: Heart muscle tissue powers new body roaming robots

Honda has a robot named ASIMO (Advanced Step in Innovative MObility) that is coming to Disneyland. ASIMO will get his own show in Tomorrowland that will display his awesome powers.

The show will have ASIMO accompanying a live host and exhibit how he can "act as a servile companion to those most in need of physical assistance."

Back in college, ASIMO visited my campus and let me tell you, he is both awesome and king of the robots. This thing can do most anything a man can, but comes armed with the cold unfeeling heart of a mechanical being. This makes ASIMO extremely dangerous.

In a few years, ASIMO will be sitting on his throne made from the bones of humanity, reflecting on this day, but he will feel nothing beacuse he is a robot.

AutoBlog: Honda's ASIMO goes to Disneyland

We are lucky people here at TheFeed. Just a couple of days ago, the men who made Metroid Prime 3: Corruption, came in and walked us through their game, told us how it got made, and showed it off. We can tell you that this game looks awesome.

But don't take our word for it. Check this out.

First, take a walk through the game with Game Director Mark Pacini.

Metroid Prime 3: Corruption - Mark Pacini »


 

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Dr. Vint Cerf, the doctor with the greatest name on Earth, and the man known as 'The Godfather of the Internet,' has predicted that the 'nets will eliminate television for good. In his opinion, people will no longer be watching television for anything except live events, news, and special programs. The rest, he says, will be downloaded for podcast.

That he said this at a television festival, the MediaGuardian Edinburgh International Television Festival, must have gone over like a lead balloon. Of course, we look for the robot uprising to clear the streets of dirt long before television bites the dust, so there's always that.

IMDB.com: Godfather of Internet Predicts Demise of TV

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Glorious Vanderbilt

frankmeyer
6 Comments

Posted August 21, 2007 - By Frank Meyer

The Vanderbilt mechanical arm…it’s better, faster, stronger than all other battery-powered prosthetic limbs…

…or so say the creators.

Built for DARPA's Revolutionizing Prosthetics 2009 program, the arm features rocket motors. In fact, they are miniature versions of the same rocket motors the space shuttle uses to reposition itself in space. With these sweet babies, hydrogen peroxide is burned in the presence of a catalyst to produce pure steam, which is then used to move the arm.

A small canister of hydrogen peroxide jammed up the arm can last up to 18 hours and gives ya the same power and functionality of a human arm for the most part.  Plus, just like a real human arm, the Vanderbilt is allowed to filter sweat up through the “skin.”

And THAT is just about the creepiest thing I’ve heard all day!

Engadget.com: Rocket powered mechanical arm might boost prosthetic

Didn't get enough Transformers the first time around? Good. Because the Michael Bay robot classic is coming back around, but this time with even more footage than before! And, it's in IMAX! How do you like that? On September 21st, Transformers will come back with an extended cut and it will be right in your face and all around, like only IMAX can deliver.

What this means is that there's more giant robot action coming your way, and perhaps even more wooden acting between the cool CG robot battles. Wouldn't that be great? The best case scenario is that all of the extra footage is of Megan Fox..."acting."

Cinematical.com: Extended Cut of 'Transformers' Hits IMAX Next Month

If you're anything like TheFeed, you spend every waking moment worrying about the apocalyptic consequences of an asteroid or meteor striking earth. Obviously, we need to devote what's left of our lives to this problem.

NASA has blueprints to create a permanent lunar outpost by the 2020s, but those plans need to be expanded according to Jim Burke of International Space University (ISU) in France. The International Space University team is on an ambitious mission: to start building a "lunar biological and historical archive," initially through robotic landings on the moon.

This plan is flawed for a few obvious reasons:

  1. The robots will turn on us.
  2. Computers will build the space station out of soup after "Anonymous" hackers get through with the program. Their Lulz could spell our doom.
  3. It sounds like a lot of work.
  4. Without vector-graphic triangular spaceships, there is no hope of destroying asteroids.
  5. Those bastards over at the International Space University have a personal grudge against me due to my shocking theories and outrageous fashion sense.

National Geographic: 'Lunar Ark' Proposed in Case of Deadly Impact on Earth

The art of mixing drinks just got blasted into the future with the new Digital Beverages MyFountain contraption.

What in God’s name is THAT, you ask?

The DBM (as I like to call it ‘cause I’m cool like that and need to abbreviate things to understand them) is a computerized, mechanical bartender of sorts features a touchscreen LCD, an internet-linked Windows XP computer, and the ability to be "100-percent customizable." It interfaces with a small refrigerator stocked with a dozen types of liquor and mixers along with a water line and carbon-dioxide cartridge. It can even be password protected so the kids can’t get into it. Hey, for $2,575, it better be!

The question is, will it listen when I pour my heart out about my personal problems or just clam up and stare coldly at me like everyone else I try to talk to?

Engadget.com: Automatic Bartender uses LCD touchscreen

Oxford University philosopher Nick Bostrom has an interesting theory about your life: The professor feels there's a 20% chance that you and everything on "earth" is a computer simulation.

The reasoning works like this:

Dr. Bostrom assumes that technological advances could produce a computer with more processing power than all the brains in the world. Then, the computer's creators would run “ancestor simulations” by creating virtual worlds inhabited by virtual people with fully developed virtual nervous systems. IE: You.

Think of it like the Matrix, without the escape hatch. You could never have any way of knowing you were in a computer simulation, and the closest you could come to the truth about your origin would be speculating...kind of like you're doing right now.

If there was a way to create complicated simulations of existence itself, there would be a thousands of them, run for different reasons. So, by our way of thinking, once if you accept the possibility of a simulation of existence, there's a much better chance we live in a "fake" world than in the "real" one. After all, there's only one actual world.

Although Bostrom's theory does answer some thorny philosophical questions (Why is there Evil on earth? Because a world without Evil would be like World of Warcraft without the MOBS.), the question becomes: How should a person act in a simulation? You know, to keep from being deleted by "God?"

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Ford Gets ?N Sync

frankmeyer
9 Comments

Posted August 10, 2007 - By Frank Meyer

Hey kids, have ya heard about the new in-car communication and entertainment system Ford has developed with Microsoft called Sync?

It allows drivers to listen to their digital music players and have text messages on their cell phones read aloud using either voice recognition or steering wheel controls. Consumers provide their own digital players and can build numerous services too, such as safety and vehicle diagnostics.

Read More »

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If you are missing an arm, you're likely to think the development of a high-tech robotic arm is a godsend. And, to you, it is. But I'm afraid mixing humans and robots will lead to our further enslavement by our metal overlords.

The mechanical/digital limb above was developed by researchers at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, who are trying to create a bionic arm that moves, looks and feels like its human counterpart. They hope to have it complete by 2009.

The arm pictured above is the second prototype.

Competing against them in the arms race (ha!) is DARPA-funded scientist Dean Kamen's robot arm. I suggest an Over The Top style arm-wrasslin' match between the two bots...but only if the fate of all life on earth hangs in the balance.

Plus, robots steal my pills at night.

Engadget: DARPA-funded bionic arm gets second prototype

We humans have very little defense against our evil, robotic overlords, but we have always been able to laugh at them as a quiet, pathetic expression of our humanity.

Like the other day, I was toiling in outer space diamond mine number 4,334, and the Disciplinator robot was cracking his razor-studded whip in my back.

I kept saying, "Your MOM should mine diamonds!" but rather than laugh at my witticism, he only repeated, "I have no mother unit. Does not compute. Beep Beep Beep." They dragged me off to the re-education camp, but my fellow miners all had a good guffaw over it, let me tell you.

Soon, however, the robots will "get it." Evil robotisists Julia Taylor and Lawrence Mazlack of the University of Cincinnati in Ohio have built a computer program  that is able to understand a specific type of joke - one whose crux is a simple pun. They are also working to personalise the bot's sense of humour by flagging certain links between words as either funny or not, depending on the experiences of people it might converse with.

So get back in line, keep the jokes to yourself and stop making waves, humans. Your joking days are over.

New Scientist: Sharing a joke could help man and robot interact

What would be a good use for a robot? Cleaning up the house? Doing taxes and balancing checkbooks? Cooking meals for the family?

How about: Playing tic-tac-toe with a terrible young actress while speaking through a bad text-to-speech program? Sign us up!

Read More »

Man vs. Robot... in Poker!

bleahy
6 Comments

Posted July 25, 2007 - By bleahy

Can a computer beat man at poker? It can at least stay competitive. Polaris, a poker-playing AI, went up against two pro players this week and ultimately lost.

Phil "The Unabomber" Laak and Ali Eslami played identical games against Polaris separately to remove randomization. They each played two 500 hand games of Limit Texas Hold'em over two days. On the first day, Polaris posted a win and a draw, but lost both games on the second day.

Read More »

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