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THORwin isn't can't quite bend it like Beckham, but when it comes to robotic soccer players, it's one of the best. The US-made machine has just won top prize in the adult-sized category at this year's RoboCup in China, an international annual soccer competition for robots that aims to pit them aga...

July 23rd 2015 at 11:57pm 0 Comments
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Think you have to wear a dedicated fitness tracker to get accurate data? Don't worry -- you may have a good excuse to skip the wristband. The University of Pennsylvania has published a study showing that smartphone apps' step counts are reasonably on the mark, at less than a 7 percent variance b...

February 10th 2015 at 10:26pm 0 Comments
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It's easy for a robot to perform in a sterile lab environment, but only a select few devices -- like Boston Dynamics notorious AlphaDog -- have proven themselves in the wild. However, the University of Pennsylvania's X-RHex Lite has also made that leap, as it were, and a new video shows just how t...

July 25th 2013 at 9:33am 0 Comments
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Move aside, Sand Flea, you're not the only jumping robot in town. The researchers over at the University of Pennsylvania have taught their little six-legged X-RHex Light to make leaps and bounds as well, making it one of a few bots to both run and jump effectively. While it can't spring as high as...

May 10th 2013 at 4:47am 0 Comments
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TitanArm already took home silver in a competition for senior projects at the University of Pennsylvania, and now the team behind it is visiting Orlando to compete in the Intel-sponsored Cornell Cup for embedded design. We stopped by the showroom and snagged a few minutes with the crew to take a l...

May 4th 2013 at 9:12am 0 Comments
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By far the greatest challenge for robots with legs is staying upright when the going gets rough. A team at the University of Pennsylvania's Kod*lab has a hunch that we don't need extra smarts to make that happen -- just an extra appendage. The upgraded X-RHex Lite (XRL) carries a tail that will sw...

July 30th 2012 at 10:41pm 0 Comments
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Engineers at the University of Pennsylvania have flipped the switch on a new type of computer circuit. Unlike conventional silicon, the new chip uses light -- not electricity -- to perform its logic. By creating an array of nano-rods, light-flow can be treated like voltage and current. These rods c...

February 26th 2012 at 4:45am 0 Comments
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We have a gut feeling this is the video that'll be playing when 'the hive' takes over -- a sentimental, 'look how far we've come' victory reel for the Quadrotor nation. But for now, let's just keep the focus on the softer side of our future nemesis' training-room foibles. Playing like an übe...

July 3rd 2011 at 11:19am 0 Comments
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So Philliebot was a fail, but this chainless bicycle serves as proof that UPenn doesn't always come up short. The Alpha Bike, designed by a group of engineering students, contains an entirely internal drivetrain that allows riders to switch between fixed-gear and multi-gear setups. The simple swit...

April 29th 2011 at 9:06am 0 Comments