Hey, remember Taiyo's voice controlled toy helicopter
from last year? This is way cooler. Like, way
cooler. It's an autonomous quad-copter created by the Robust Robotics Group at MIT
. It hovers and flies a bit like the AR.Drone
that had us smitten at CES this past January, but this one has a lot more brains. It response to natural (though slowly delivered) language voice commands that look to be processed on an iPhone before being sent to the helo. In the video embedded below you'll see it responding to the command "Fly past room 124 then face the windows and go up." Sure enough, it does as instructed, and while we don't know how many takes that particular feat of robotic subservience took to pull off, we're suitably impressed. Mind you, this is a research project and not any product ever destined for retail, so after watching that video a few more times we'll just go back to crashing our Picco Zs into the walls -- and each other.