Gracie was just a newborn puppy when her previous owners threw her away because she was missing her front legs as a result of a birth defect. Eventually, she was adopted by the Turley family – a family who runs their own shelter of their own – and the biggest concern was about her mobility. Growing puppies aren’t eligible for a wheelchair fitting, so Dylan, a 12-year-old volunteer, came up with a brilliant idea. He decided to use LEGO, which can easily be readjusted with flexibility as Gracie continued to grow. Read more for a video and additional information.
BBC hid cameras inside 36 robot animals to give viewers a close-up view of wildlife for their “Spy in the Wild” TV special. The animals included a baby gorilla, sea turtle, jaguar, humming bird and pygmy elephant. Each one was equipped with a concealed camera to film animals in their natural habitats. Read more to see an alpha silverback gorilla accepting a robotic baby spy into his family.
Stanford University engineers have unveiled PigeonBot, a bird robot with a wrist and finger with 40 feathers – 20 per wing—gathered from domestic pigeons called squab. By programming the robot to bend at one joint, the researchers could see how that movement contributes to a bird’s aeronautical maneuvers, and may eventually lead to bird-inspired drones. Read more for a video and additional information.
Yukai Engineering’s Petit Qoobo just might be the strangest robot yet at CES 2020. This pillow-like device is the followup to the company’s larger Qoobo that was unveiled last year, and it’s exactly as it looks, a tail wagging robot, but this time, with a microphone to detect sound, as well as haptic feedback for vibrating softly to mimic occasional purrs. Read more for two videos and additional information.
You’ve probably seen Sony’s Aibo robotic dog, but if you’ve always wanted a cat version, MarsCat by Elephant Robotics should do the trick. This bionic cat robot autonomously moves around, thanks to 16 motorized joints, and can also randomly perform various activities, like playing, sleeping, and covering up waste in a litter box. Read more for a video and additional information.
Ebo is the creation from Enabot, and it’s a softball-sized robot that looks like your typical cat toy, but comes equipped with a host of high-tech features, including a 1080p camera, microphone, Wi-Fi connectivity, automatic docking/charging, self-learning AI, as well as activity / mood trackers. It was designed for cat owners to keep their pets happy and entertained when out of the house. Read more for a video and additional information.
Photo credit: Dick van Duijn
Dutch photographer Dick van Duijn spent all day in a forest in The Netherlands with a Nikon D5 DSLR paired with a Nikon 300mm f/2.8 VR II lens to capture some images. Little did he know that a squirrel would just so happen to be gathering nuts, and managed to be in the perfect place to photograph it leaping across water with a nut. Read more to see the sequence he posted to his Instagram account.
Scientists have discovered a link between a cow’s emotional state and it’s daily milk production, and the RusMoloko farm in Moscow decided to go high-tech with its solution. That’s right, cows have been equipped with virtual reality headsets adapted for the structural features of cow heads to reduce their anxiety and improve overall emotional mood in the herd. Read more for another picture and additional information.
Sony Electronics has just released an extensive software update (Version 2.50) for its autonomous robot puppy companion, Aibo (ERS1000). Once updated, owners will gain access to new programmable resources as well as several new whimsical capabilities, such as the ability to virtually feed Aibo cookies, potty train it and lots more. Read more for two videos and additional information.
MIT’s new mini cheetah robot is springy, light on its feet and has a range of motion that rivals a champion gymnast. This four-legged bot may look small, but it can bend and swing its legs wide, enabling it to walk either right-side up or upside down. The robot can easily traverse uneven terrain about twice as fast as an average person’s walking speed. Read more for a video and additional information.