$50,000 strawberry-picking robot to go on sale in Japan This bot uses an imaging system to gauge when berries are ripe. It’s perfect for making very expensive jam.

$50,000 strawberry-picking robot to go on sale in Japan This bot uses an imaging system to gauge when berries are ripe. It’s perfect for making very expensive jam.
When it finds one, a robotic arm reaches out and snips its stem. Into the basket it goes. It can harvest a berry every 8 seconds. “This robot would harvest two-thirds of the strawberries during the night when growers are sleeping,” Shibuya Seiki’s Mitsutaka Kurita told AFP. “The farmer can then pick the rest of the strawberries that the robot couldn’t get at.” While a small basket of strawberries can fetch about $5 in Japan, harvesting them takes a lot more work than other produce such as rice, tomatoes, or cucumbers. But the machine could eventually pay for itself. The berry-bot is the commercial version of a robot developed by Japan’s National Agriculture and Food Research Organization (NARO) that we saw three years ago. Back then, it took 9 seconds to pick a berry, so it’s slightly faster now. In another 10 years, it’ll be baking strawberry shortcakes in no time flat.


Neue Handlungsspielräumezwischen Mensch und Maschine

Die ExoHand von Festo ist ein Exoskelett, das wie ein Handschuh angezogen werden kann. Mit ihr lassen sich Finger aktiv bewegen, die Kraft in den Fingern verstärken sowie Bewegungen der Hand aufnehmen und in Echtzeit auf Roboterhände übertragen.

Ziel ist es, die Stärke und Ausdauer der menschlichen Hand zu verbessern, den menschlichen Handlungsspielraum zu erweitern und die Unabhängigkeit auch in hohem Alter zu gewährleisten.

OpenHRP3: Intelligent RT Software Project

OpenHRP3: Intelligent RT Software Project
OpenHRP3 (Open Architecture Human-centered Robotics Platform version 3) is an integrated software platform for robot simulations and software developments. It allows the users to inspect an original robot model and control program by dynamics simulation. In addition, OpenHRP3 provides various software components and calculation libraries that can be used for robotics related software developments.

OpenHRP3 is developed as a one of the complementary project called “Distributed component type robot simulator”, executed by “Cooperation of Next Generation Robots” that belongs to “Government Cooperation of Science and Technology”. Dynamics calculation engine is almost developed by “Nakamura Lab, Dept. of Mechano Informatics, University of Tokyo” and graphical interface is done by “General Robotix, Inc”.

The AIkon project : the Artistic/Automated Ikonograph

The AIkon project : the Artistic/Automated Ikonograph
The AikonI project was concerned with implementing a system able to mimic strategies deployed by an artist to represent faces with a line.Artistic drawing, is the human activity we investigate in the AIKON project. It has been practiced in every civilisation for at least the last 30,000 years. The project will be using computational and robotic technologies to explore the drawing activity. In particular the research focuses on face sketching. What can explain that for a non-draughtsman it proves so difficult to draw what they perceive so clearly, while an artist is able to do so sometimes just with a few lines, in a few seconds? Furthermore, how can an artist draw with an immediately recognisable style/manner? How can a few lines thrown spontaneously on paper be aesthetically pleasing? Art historians, psychologists, neuroscientists — such as Arnheim, Fry, Gombrich, Leyton, Ramachandran, Ruskin, Willats, Zeki — have argued that artists perceive the world differently.

Laurens’ Mindstorms Projects – Always under construction – Mindstorms Projects, built by Laurens

Laurens’ Mindstorms Projects – Always under construction – Mindstorms Projects, built by Laurens
If you’re looking for some of LEGO© MINDSTORMS™ robot designs, you’re in the right place. This page holds a variety of projects I made in the past years. You may have noticed models aren’t posted as frequent as before. This is for a couple of reasons, but I’m still building with Mindstorms!One thing is that most of the models I currently make are used for publication in books. Furthermore, I have also designed a couple models for The LEGO Company which I can’t post here either. (Stay tuned, I will post these here, later.) On top of that, I teach a robotics class at a local middle school which is also a fun thing to do, but relatively time consuming at the same time.