Cool robot oriented mags & links

I picked up the latest edition of Popular Science yesterday which has a nice article on "The Real Iron Man" - the exoskeleton suit
being developed by Sarcos. Here's a link to the online version: http://www.popsci.com/scitech/article/2008-04/building-real-iron-man
Also, I've been getting this trade magazine for a while now, and it always has interesting gizmos & new product announcements - and discusses "mechatronics" frequently: http://www.designnews.com/ I like the print mag more than the web site.
Enjoy! JCD
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pogo wrote:

I saw this as well last night when I picked up PS at the local store. I was also gratified to see the magazine is going back to more of its old roots. For a time it had an identity crisis, and wasn't like the magazine I knew in my youth - or wrote for in the 80s.
Though I didn't pick it up, there was a special Scientific American issue just on robotics. Makes you wonder why there's all this interest all of a sudden...
-- Gordon
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Yeah I picked up a copy of that Scientific American myself (I assume it's the same one). Turned out to be mostly reprints but still a good diversion for something to read when away from the house/office, anyway.
Later ! JCD
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I was wondering the same thing myself. Some have predicted that we are in the "Steve Wozniak working in the garage" phase of personal robotics, and it's about to take off like a rocket. It does seem likely to me. Perhaps iRobot is the Apple Computer of our time.
BRW
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BRW wrote:

We've had this period come and go a couple times since Apple II days. Last one peaked at about 1999 or 2000. For whatever reason it never quite catches on for robotics as it did for computers. The mechanics are still pretty expensive, and not as subject to Moore's Law as silicon.
Let's see if the interest can be rekindled, and hope it will last more than a couple of years, and will bring with it some definite movement in the adoptation of robotics in home and small industry (rather than just research).
-- Gordon
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For what its worth - the latest Wired magazine issue has an interesting article on an ex-employee of iRobot ripping off their PackBot design. Hopefully the military will keep paying for the hard science & research and some form of it will filter down to the consumer ... like GPS has.
One thing I just thought of is that robotic appliances could be liability lawsuits waiting to happen. Can you imagine if the family robot mistakenly puts the cat in the freezer? Brings Grandma the wrong pill ? Shorts out while drawing a bath and causes flood damage ? These sort of fears could stall otherwise enthusiastic (consumer) robot manufacturers from offering products.
Just a couple of cents worth ... JCD
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Lawsuits, schmawsuits. I'm more worried about them collaborating to enslave humanity.
BRW
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The robots or the lawyers?
Joe Dunfee
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Ok, I tried to make a joke, but that was only because I mis-understood the orginal joke... the robots collaborating with the laywers. So, my own joke withdrawn.
Joe Dunfee
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wrote:

Oh I kinda liked the original one myself! :-D
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I seem to recall that the series "Buck Rogers in the 21st Century" had computers which were a rough equivalent of the Supreme Court.
So, at least one person has imagined a future where the lawyers and robots are one and the same.
Joe Dunfee
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