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Archive for the ‘robotics/AI’ category

Jul 29, 2016

Smart bricks would enable walls capable of generating electricity, clean water and oxygen

Posted by in categories: biological, habitats, robotics/AI

A lot of things are becoming “smart” these days, but bricks might not be something you’d expect to be added to the list. On the way to buildings that act like “large-scale living organisms,” scientists at the University of the West of England (UWE Bristol) are developing smart bricks that would make use of microbes to recycle wastewater, generate electricity and produce oxygen.

Microbial fuel cells (MFCs), which will be embedded in the bricks to give them their “smart” capabilities, have proven handy in the past, with researchers demonstrating how they can be used to generate electricity from human urine, dead flies or just plain old mud.

“Microbial fuel cells are energy transducers that exploit the metabolic activity of the constituent microbes to break down organic waste and generate electricity,” says Ioannis Ieropoulos, professor at UWE Bristol’s Robotics Laboratory. “This is a novel application for MFC modules to be made into actuating building blocks as part of wall structures. This will allow us to explore the possibility of treating household waste, generating useful levels of electricity, and have ‘active programmable’ walls within our living environments.”

Jul 29, 2016

Demonetized Cost of Living

Posted by in categories: economics, employment, government, robotics/AI

People are concerned about how AI and robotics are taking jobs and destroying livelihoods… reducing our earning capacity, and subsequently destroying the economy.

In anticipation, countries like Canada, India and Finland are running experiments to pilot the idea of “universal basic income” — the unconditional provision of a regular sum of money from the government to support livelihood independent of employment.

But what people aren’t talking about, and what’s getting my attention, is a forthcoming rapid demonetization of the cost of living.

Continue reading “Demonetized Cost of Living” »

Jul 29, 2016

BotBeat: This week’s top bot stories

Posted by in category: robotics/AI

Jul 29, 2016

How the most connected hospitals will use chatbots

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, food, health, life extension, mobile phones, robotics/AI

Sure, chatbots are useful for service industries like hospitality and food delivery, but in health care? Some groups are testing the use of chatbots to retrieve medical information from within a messaging app. At first glance, that seems a bit impersonal, but a closer look reveals a wide range of use cases where bots could make your next visit to the hospital, doctor’s office, or pharmacy faster and more effective.

Let’s run this back a bit. If you’re not familiar with bots, here’s a brief explanation. Bots are software applications that run automated tasks or scripts that serve as shortcuts for completing a certain job, but they do it faster (a lot faster) and with verve. And in health care, we spend a lot of time spent generating and retrieving information.

By putting a trained army of bots inside an application — smartphone, desktop, whatever-top — health care workers can rapidly improve throughput by simply cutting out a bunch of steps. That’s something most care providers today would welcome, especially with millions of new people entering the system as a result of the Affordable Care Act and the aging of baby boomers. With the crush of increased data entry and new regulations, costs and rote work are skyrocketing.

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Jul 29, 2016

World’s largest self-driving warship aces its first sea trials: US Navy’s 132ft-long ‘Sea Hunter’ drone will scour oceans for enemy subs

Posted by in categories: drones, military, robotics/AI

Dubbed the ‘Sea Hunter’, the 132ft ship is designed to travel thousands of miles out at sea without a single crew member on board.

The self driving warship has now completed its first trials — and passed with flying colours.

Continue reading “World’s largest self-driving warship aces its first sea trials: US Navy’s 132ft-long ‘Sea Hunter’ drone will scour oceans for enemy subs” »

Jul 28, 2016

Will You Ever Love a Robot?

Posted by in categories: biological, robotics/AI

“In a sense, we’re all meat robots.” Chief Scientist at Hanson Robotics blurs the lines between biological and engineered robotics in this short yet fascinating excerpt.

Jul 28, 2016

New Group Takes On Massive Computing Needs of Big Data

Posted by in categories: computing, engineering, information science, neuroscience, robotics/AI

Big Data and Obama’s Brain Initiative — As we harness mass volumes of information and the current tech explosion around information; we will seeing an accelerated growing need/ urgency for more advance AI, QC, and new brain-mind interface intelligence to assist others when working with both super-intelligence AI and the mass volumes of information.


Engineers are experimenting with chip design to boost computer performance. In the above layout of a chip developed at Columbia, analog and digital circuits are combined in a novel architecture to solve differential equations with extreme speed and energy efficiency. Image: Simha Sethumadhavan, Mingoo Seok and Yannis Tsividis/Columbia Engineering.

In the big data era, the modern computer is showing signs of age. The sheer number of observations now streaming from land, sea, air and space has outpaced the ability of most computers to process it. As the United States races to develop an “exascale” machine up to the task, a group of engineers and scientists at Columbia have teamed up to pursue solutions of their own.

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Jul 28, 2016

Exclusive Interview with a BioRobotics Researcher

Posted by in category: robotics/AI

An interview with the ever humble Francesco Corucci world re-known BioRobotics researcher with the BioRobotics Institute.


We had the unique opportunity to interview Francesco Corucci, a Phd Fellow at the BioRobotics Institute. As we aren’t researchers ourselves, here are the unedited answers by Francesco instead of paraphrasing or rewording his message.

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Jul 28, 2016

Versatile microrobotics using simple modular subunits

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, particle physics, robotics/AI

The realization of reconfigurable modular microrobots could aid drug delivery and microsurgery by allowing a single system to navigate diverse environments and perform multiple tasks. So far, microrobotic systems are limited by insufficient versatility; for instance, helical shapes commonly used for magnetic swimmers cannot effectively assemble and disassemble into different size and shapes. Here by using microswimmers with simple geometries constructed of spherical particles, we show how magnetohydrodynamics can be used to assemble and disassemble modular microrobots with different physical characteristics. We develop a mechanistic physical model that we use to improve assembly strategies. Furthermore, we experimentally demonstrate the feasibility of dynamically changing the physical properties of microswimmers through assembly and disassembly in a controlled fluidic environment. Finally, we show that different configurations have different swimming properties by examining swimming speed dependence on configuration size.

Jul 26, 2016

Artificial intelligence is now writing music

Posted by in categories: media & arts, robotics/AI

The artificial intelligence “Magenta” wrote an original song, and it’s not half bad. Check it out.

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