Category Archives: Robot News

Thrish interviewed by Sky News (2013-03-19)

In a report discussing the increasing presence of robots in our daily lives, Sky News interviewed Dr. Thrishantha Nanayakkara on his views of how robots can be perceived.

“Machines are machines, and humans are humans. Is there not a line that we simply shouldn’t be crossing there?” Sky asks. To which Thrish replied, “Actually, avatars in the future will be a magnificent way to communicate with humans.”

Thrish discussed the “uncanny valley” many experience when facing robots. It is a psychological phenomenon that occurs when human-like robots look and act almost like actual human beings, but their subtle imperfections cause a response of discontent among human observers. However, technology is beginning to overcome this threshold.

Thrish then discusses how the study of robots will help us learn more about ourselves. For example, walking seems trivial, yet many robots struggle to do so. The analysis and research into robot walking will help us understand how humans perform it so well.

“Robots can be a mirror on which humanity can be reflected, one day.”

The power of passive locomotion

The power of passive locomotion!

Courtesy of Forward Focus Films:

THE MINE KAFON is a Semifinalist in the $200,000 FOCUS FORWARD Filmmaker Competition and is in the running to become the $100,000 Grand Prize Winner. It could also be named an Audience Favorite if it’s among the ten that receives the most votes. If you love it, vote for it. Click on the VOTE button in the top right corner of the video player. Note that voting may not be available on all mobile platforms, and browser cookies must be enabled to vote.

A short documentary portrait on a designer who has created a low cost solution to landmine clearance.

This is very cool! Like the Mine Kafon, we believe in robotics which utilize passive locomotion. The ability to adapt to its environment is a big deal, and this device does it both simply and cheaply.