Cultibotics
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Cultibotics
Cultibotics is about applying robotics to making horticultural best practices scalable and economical.
Curated by John Payne
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Ibex extreme mobility agribot goes where no farm robot has gone before | Gizmag

Ibex extreme mobility agribot goes where no farm robot has gone before | Gizmag | Cultibotics | Scoop.it
UK-based Ibex Automation is starting field trials in England's Peak District of its extreme mobility agricultural robot that can maneuver around steep pastures as it identifies and destroys weeds.
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Drone makes historic 72-minute flight across English Channel

Drone makes historic 72-minute flight across English Channel | Cultibotics | Scoop.it

“A 72-minute voyage across the English channel may seem beyond drone technology's capabilities. But UK commercial drone operator Ocuair has defied the odds, traversing the waterway with a custom-built quadcopter in a first for unmanned aerial vehicles.”

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Meet SAM, the bricklaying robot | NSF

“SAM, short for Semi-Automated Mason, was developed by Construction Robotics, a small business funded by the National Science Foundation Small Business Innovation Research program. SAM works alongside masons to install bricks, making the humans’ jobs less backbreaking. It is designed to increase productivity and reduce heavy-lifting burdens on construction crews. Masons set SAM up and work alongside it, continuing to use their knowledge and skills while letting the robot handle the repetition and physical labor.”

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Algorithms and challenges in scaling up autonomous flight | CMU RI Seminar

“Adam Bry is co-founder and CEO of Skydio, a venture backed drone startup based in the bay area. Prior to Skydio he helped start Project Wing at Google[x] where he worked on the flight algorithms and software.” His abstract follows: “Drones hold enormous potential for consumer video, inspection, mapping, monitoring, and perhaps even delivery. They’re also natural candidates for autonomy and likely to be among the first widely-deployed systems that incorporate meaningful intelligence based on computer vision and robotics research. In this talk I’ll discuss the trajectory of hobbies, research, and work that led me to start Skydio. I’ll cover some of the algorithms developed during my research at MIT which culminated in a fixed-wing vehicle that could navigate obstacles at high speeds. I’ll also present some of the work that we’ve done at Skydio in motion planning and perception, along with the challenges involved in building a robust robotics software system that needs to work at scale.”

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Zephyr, a tiny open-source IoT RTOS | LinuxGizmos

Zephyr, a tiny open-source IoT RTOS | LinuxGizmos | Cultibotics | Scoop.it
The Linux Foundation has launched the Zephyr Project, to foster an open source, small footprint, modular, scalable, connected, real-time OS for IoT devices.
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Milrem combat robot brings modular versatility to the battlefield | Gizmag

Milrem combat robot brings modular versatility to the battlefield | Gizmag | Cultibotics | Scoop.it

Estonian defense company Milrem this week took the wraps off its robotic THeMIS – a compact battlewagon billed as the "first-of-its-kind modular hybrid Unmanned Ground Vehicle (UGV)" that acts as a multi-mission vehicle platform to...


Via Kalani Kirk Hausman
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Robots: Destroying jobs, our economy, and possibly the world | Ars Technica

Robots: Destroying jobs, our economy, and possibly the world | Ars Technica | Cultibotics | Scoop.it

“The past decade or so has seen some spectacular advances in artificial intelligence. But—as is so often the case with emerging technologies—is there a dark side to this brave new world? That was the topic for discussion by a panel of computer scientists and ethicists at this year's meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.”

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New algorithm to improve pedestrian recognition accuracy of driverless cars | Gizmag

New algorithm to improve pedestrian recognition accuracy of driverless cars | Gizmag | Cultibotics | Scoop.it
UCSD researchers have developed a pedestrian detection system they claim performs in near real-time at higher accuracy than existing systems. The researchers believe that the algorithm and technology could be used in self-driving vehicles, robotics, and in image and video search systems.
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Parrot's multispectral crop monitoring sensor can be retrofitted to existing drones | Gizmag

Parrot's multispectral crop monitoring sensor can be retrofitted to existing drones | Gizmag | Cultibotics | Scoop.it
Parrot has announced a sensor attachment that can be slapped on old drones to take infrared pictures and help farmers work out the areas in need of attention.
John Payne's insight:

Parrot's multispectral crop monitoring sensor can be retrofitted to existing drones | Gizmag

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Matthew Johnson-Roberson: New robotic approaches to underwater mapping | CMU RI Seminar

“Matthew Johnson-Roberson is Assistant Professor of Engineering in the Department of Naval Architecture & Marine Engineering and the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at the University of Michigan. He received a PhD from the University of Sydney in 2010. There he worked on Autonomous Underwater Vehicles for long-term environment monitoring. Upon joining the University of Michigan faculty in 2013, he created the DROP (Deep Robot Optical Perception) Lab, which researches a wide variety of perception problems in robotics including SLAM, 3D reconstruction, scene understanding, data mining, and visualization.”

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Hybrid polymer shows promise in artificial muscles, among other applications | Gizmag

Hybrid polymer shows promise in artificial muscles, among other applications | Gizmag | Cultibotics | Scoop.it
Researchers at Northwestern University have developed a hybrid polymer that combines soft and hard areas like bones and muscles in animals. According to the team, this breakthrough in nanoengineering opens the door to applications ranging from self-repairing materials to artificial muscles.
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Prof. Simon Blackmore interviewed at LAMA | BBC Radio 4: Farming Today This Week

Prof. Simon Blackmore interviewed at LAMA | BBC Radio 4: Farming Today This Week | Cultibotics | Scoop.it

LAMA is Britains largest agricultural machinery show.  Professor Simon Blackmore is most likely the one person anyone interested in agricultural robotics is most likely to have heard of.  The interview, in the Saturday, January 23rd episode of Farming Today This Week, begins at 1:05 in the recording, and runs for three minutes. A second interview with chicken producer David Speller addresses his use of robots to monitor chickens in his massive sheds.

The recording is also available from iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/farming-today-this-week/id261779638?i=361292541&mt=2

LAMA: http://www.lammashow.com

Prof. Simon Blackmore: http://www.harper-adams.ac.uk/staff/profile.cfm?id=201049

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Robotic 'sand-blaster' removes weeds without chemicals | Gizmag

Robotic 'sand-blaster' removes weeds without chemicals | Gizmag | Cultibotics | Scoop.it
Although there are various other types of eco-friendly weed control, organic farm workers often end up yanking weeds out by hand. Thanks to the relatively new process of "abrasive weeding," however, that may not always be necessary.
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Clearpath joins John Deere supply base | Clearpath Robotics

Clearpath joins John Deere supply base | Clearpath Robotics | Cultibotics | Scoop.it
Clearpath, developer of OTTO, has been chosen to supply self-driving vehicles for assembly line conveyance to John Deere’s operation in Horicon, Wisconsin.
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Open Connectivity Foundation brings massive scale to IoT ecosystem

“Beaverton, Oregon – Feb. 19, 2016 – Today, major industry leaders who are invested in the future of the Internet of Things, announced they will unify as the Open Connectivity Foundation (OCF), an entity whose goal will be to help unify IoT standards so that companies and developers can create IoT solutions and devices that work seamlessly together. Via cross-industry collaboration, the OCF will work towards unlocking the massive opportunity of the future global IoT segment, accelerate industry innovation and help all developers and companies create solutions that map to a single, open IoT interoperability specification. Ultimately, with OCF specifications, protocols and open source projects, a wide-range of consumer, enterprise and embedded devices and sensors from a variety of manufacturers, can securely and seamlessly interact with one another.”
John Payne's insight:
Participating entities include ARRIS, CableLabs, Cisco, Electrolux, GE Digital, Intel, Microsoft, Qualcomm, and Samsung.
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Luke Ijspeert: A robot that runs and swims like a salamander | TED

“Roboticist Auke Ijspeert designs biorobots, machines modeled after real animals that are capable of handling complex terrain and would appear at home in the pages of a sci-fi novel. The process of creating these robots leads to better automata that can be used for fieldwork, service, and search and rescue. But these robots don't just mimic the natural world — they help us understand our own biology better, unlocking previously unknown secrets of the spinal cord.”

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Fully recyclable carbon-fiber composite | Colorado Arts & Sciences Magazine

Fully recyclable carbon-fiber composite | Colorado Arts & Sciences Magazine | Cultibotics | Scoop.it

“Strong and light carbon-fiber composites can be easily and cost-effectively recycled into new material just as strong as the originals, a team of researchers led by the University of Colorado Boulder has found. ... Additionally, both the fabrication and the recycling are energy-efficient and comparatively fast, potentially addressing barriers to wider use in manufacturing.”

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Will humanoid robots build tomorrow's aircraft? | Gizmag

Will humanoid robots build tomorrow's aircraft? | Gizmag | Cultibotics | Scoop.it
To give human workers a helping manipulator, JRL and Airbus Group have embarked on a four-year project to develop humanoid robots that can work on aircraft assembly lines.
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Video Friday: NOVA's Rise of the Robots... | IEEE Spectrum

Video Friday: NOVA's Rise of the Robots... | IEEE Spectrum | Cultibotics | Scoop.it

“Mark your calendars: the premiere of NOVA’s “Rise of the Robots” is in less than two weeks! Loyal readers of this blog will probably recognize all of the robots and most of the people in the trailer, but it looks like NOVA—which bills itself as “the most-watched primetime science series on television”—scored some great expert commentary along with footage of DRC robots that we’ve never seen before.”

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Sabine Hauert: Swarming nanobots for cancer applications | CMU RI Seminar

Sabine earned her PhD at EPFL, did a post-doc at MIT, and is now a lecturer in robotics at Bristol University.  She describes herself as a swarm engineer.  The abstract for her presentation follows: "Nanoparticles for cancer applications are increasingly able to move, sense, and interact the body in a controlled fashion. The challenge is to discover how trillions of nanoparticles can work together to improve the detection and treatment of tumors. Towards this end, the field of swarm robotics offers tools and techniques to control large numbers of agents with limited capabilities. Our swarm strategies are designed in realistic simulators using bio-inspiration, machine learning and crowdsourcing (NanoDoc: http://nanodoc.org). Strategies are then translated to 1000 coin-sized robots, or to experiments under the microscope in tissue-on-a-chip devices. Lessons learned could also enable large-scale swarm deployments in outdoor applications."

 

(Sabine has also long been involved with Robots Podcast and Robohub, and is a constant source of inspiration for all around her!)

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Using 3D printing to create molds for utility scale wind turbine blades | Energy.gov

Using 3D printing to create molds for utility scale wind turbine blades | Energy.gov | Cultibotics | Scoop.it

“Last spring, a 3D-printed replica Shelby Cobra, manufactured at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), visited the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) headquarters in Washington, DC. Now, DOE’s Wind Program and Advanced Manufacturing Office, ORNL, Sandia National Laboratories (SNL), and other organizations are partnering to apply this advanced manufacturing technology to the production of wind turbine blade molds.”

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If there are no new farmers, who will grow our food? | Yes! Magazine

If there are no new farmers, who will grow our food? | Yes! Magazine | Cultibotics | Scoop.it
Programs across the country are trying to make it easier for new farmers to get started and put down roots. Here's why: There's only one farmer under 35 for every six over 65. By 2030, one-quarter of America's current farmers will retire.
John Payne's insight:

The trend, particularly since World War II, sometimes even official policy, has been for people to migrate from farm to city.  Consequently, rural areas have been depopulated, particularly in the U.S., and, while urban farming is beginning to take up the slack in the production of leafy vegetables, and possesses considerable potential for diversification, there's little hope that it can replace more traditional farming for the production of fruit, cereals, legumes, and root vegetables at scale, much less meat.  We will still need farmers, and, because the dwindling number of farmers faces a shortage of willing laborers, increasingly they'll be needing help.  Where will that help come from?

 

Link via Alan Yoshioka's Vertical Farm - Food Facotry

http://www.scoop.it/t/vertical-farm-food-factory

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Soft robotic gripper gets a grasp on fragile objects using electroadhesion | Gizmag

Soft robotic gripper gets a grasp on fragile objects using electroadhesion | Gizmag | Cultibotics | Scoop.it

“Scientists are claiming an important advance in soft robotic grippers, demonstrating a device that can better grasp fragile objects through the help of electroadhesion, the very same phenomenon that sees balloons cling to ceilings after being rubbed on your hair.”

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Should we make robots that die like humans? | DNews

“Biodegradable bodies for more eco-friendly robotsBiodegradable bodies for more eco-friendly robots
http://www.reuters.com/article/us-ita...
“Scientists from the Italian Institute of Technology are developing 'smart materials' that could lead to robots that will decompose like a human body once they've reached the end of their life-span.”

John Payne's insight:

Assuming that some components of these robots would be valuable enough to warrant recycling  and/or toxic, it would be a good idea to make those components relatively easy to remove, so the remainder can be composted or left to decompose without consequence.  Combining the electronics and wiring into a wiring harness, which can be installed and later removed as a unit, would be a good start.

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Loon Copter drone flies, floats and dives underwater | Gizmag

Loon Copter drone flies, floats and dives underwater | Gizmag | Cultibotics | Scoop.it
Along with the usual flying drones, there are also models that can both fly and float. As is the case with its feathered namesake, however, the Loon Copter can fly, land on the water to see what's under the surface, and then dive down to check out what it sees.
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