As usual in the past couple of weeks, the publication of the week section is manned by Rodrigo. The most clicked link last week was Paul McWhorter’s video tutorials with 19.0% opens.
A lot has happened on Mars since the last newsletter issue. Not only Ingenuity made it’s first flight but it also did it’s second and even a third one! What strucks me in these videos is how amazing the altitude control is. Here is a chart from the first flight.
While we are in space. Do you know Valkyrie robot? It turns out it has quite an extensive repository and an OK wiki. As someone who does work with ROS often I appreciated the ros_control page.
Disney Imagineering’s Project Kiwi is a free-walking robot that will make you believe in Groot
Disney Imagineering is working on a small bipedal platform that will be used to ‘tell a story’ in theme parks. The first prototype is impersonating Groot, however the platform will be flexible enough to support other characters. What I found interesting in the article is that the team used origami-like circuit boards joined by integrated flex cabling instead of using traditional wires. If you’d like to see the platform in action then here is the video.
Grain Bin Robot | Grain Weevil
In October 2020 (issue 114) we featured Crover, a grain monitoring robot. Weevil (really cool name for the robot!) has another purpose: it uses props to ‘swim through’ grains, moving the product as it goes and causing small avalanches so that you don’t need to shovel the grain in your life. I wonder if there is any food grade hardware that has to be used for such applications. If you know then please let me know!
15 Graphs You Need to See to Understand AI in 2021
IEEE Spectrum went through the Stanford University’s AI Index Report and distilled it into 15 graphs.
Publication of the Week - Accelerating Surgical Robotics Research: Reviewing 10 Years of Research with the dVRK (2021)
The integration between robots and healthcare is not new and has shown impressive development over the past decades. More than 5K da Vinci surgical systems have been deployed and performed over 7M surgical procedures. To forest this integration, the da Vinci Research Kit (dVRK) was created as an academic research platform for surgical robots in 2012. This paper makes an overview of all 280 papers created based on this platform and classifies them into different categories, such as automation, that includes different aspects of how the robot can use machine learning techniques to later perform procedures autonomously.
WR Community Meeting #8 - Formant with James Turnshek
James Turnshek, Chief Architect at Formant, will talk about how to create and scale a modern robotics company, what the state of the art currently looks like, and how Formant helps these companies run their fleets. While you wait for the event you can play with Spot on Formant’s platform. If you would like to present your robotics related projects or ideas in one of the meetings or know someone that would be interested then please let me know!
Previous Meeting #7 - mjbots with Josh Pieper
Last week we had a chance to learn about Josh Pieper and how he ended up founding mjbots, developing open source hardware for robotics. Really interesting talk and interesting anecdotes from his experience working with UUVs and self-driving cars.