A few weeks ago, I posted a video of a new robot from Honda that jogs upright and stubbornly refuses to be pushed down when a human tries to knock it over. Exciting (and scary) stuff.
Since then, I’ve come across dozens of videos and articles about new developments in robotics – it’s not so much that robots are learning how to solve academic math problems any faster or more efficiently…it’s that they’re learning how to become more like humans – they play sports, master musical instruments, and may even be able to have sex (woah). Here are some wild recent developments that caught my attention:
-Are you desperate to ride an old-fashioned bicycle built for two, but you don’t have anyone to join you? Call up “Joules” and you’ll have a riding partner for life…or at least until “Joules” turns on you and eats your brain.
-This robot named “Deep Blue” wants to get you drunk at a pool hall and hustle you for $50. It’s creators say it plays at a better-than-average level…and it’s getting better every day.
-Link via Gizmodo
-Not only is “Haile” good at playing the drums, but it can also improvise by listening to and analyzing live human drummers in real-time.
-Link via Neatorama
-Move over David Beckham…say hello to “Hajime 33″. OK, maybe that’s a slight exaggeration.
-Need to jump over a 25 foot tall barbed wired wall? Have no fear, this new military robot is here to help, and it won’t even ask why you need to jump over a 25 foot tall barbed wired wall.
And last but not least, have a quick look at this article that profiles artificial intelligence researcher David Levy. He recently took home the prize for developing the most human-like chatbox (which is essentially a program that imitates human speech and cognition in an eerily accurate way.) David claims it’s only a matter of time before we start doing the nasty with our robot friends. He says “as soon as the media starts writing about ‘My fantastic weekend with a sex doll’, it will be like the iPhone all over again, but the queues will be longer.” I can already see the fanboys preparing their sleeping bags to camp out weeks in advance. (via Guardian)