Slideshow

IN PICTURES: The latest robotics and gadgets from MIT

The latest and greatest tech from the world’s leading lab. The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) is one of the world’s leading innovators of technology in robotics, planning and gadgets. ARN visited its media lab to find out what the teams are working on – and what you may soon see in stores near you.

  • Just when you thought they couldn’t look scarier, along comes Leonardo – the cutting edge in responsive robotics. This little critter is designed to mimic emotive responses and has 32 degrees of freedom in the face alone. It will recognize when you stroke its fur and can copy your expressions. Fortunately the next model is being built into a cute, cuddly and very stock standard teddy bear.

  • This is a half-sized mock up of the CityCar. Each wheel is powered separately, which allows them to individually turn – no more need to reverse park. What makes it really special, however, is the ability to convert from a long-bodied car to a vertical one. The passenger space is designed to shift for the whole car to squeeze into tighter spaces. Expect to see them in the streets of Spain within the next 3-5 years.

  • This is a half-sized mock up of the CityCar. Each wheel is powered separately, which allows them to individually turn – no more need to reverse park. What makes it really special, however, is the ability to convert from a long-bodied car to a vertical one. The passenger space is designed to shift for the whole car to squeeze into tighter spaces. Expect to see them in the streets of Spain within the next 3-5 years.

  • A full-scale skeleton of the CityCar

  • This device acts as a simple mirror for everyday use. But strapped to the back is a full-sized monitor, which displays information. A hidden camera, known as a Cardiocam, also lets it check your blood pressure and the information can be stored or sent to medical professionals.

  • The Proverbial Wallet is a project that seeks a novel solution to an age-old problem – how to keep people from spending money they can’t afford. The device uses wireless technology to find out how much money you have, what you’ve budgeted for and what your goals are. When there’s plenty of money in your account, it happily opens to allow plenty of spending. But once the bank balance starts running low, it forces users to use a lot more effort when opening it up. It can be set to buzz at you instead, but that’d never work.

  • The Mobile/Dexterous/Social (MDS) project aims to create mobile, dexterous and social robots that can interact with humans and work as a team. This particular unit is known as Nexi and whether you’d want to be social with something that looks this creepy is a debatable matter… But the robotics behind it are certainly cutting edge.

  • Nexi stripped down

  • This is the wallpaper of the future. Known as the Living Wall, it’s entirely flat and made purely of paper and paint. But the paper comes with magnetic electronic modules that work as sensors, lamps and network interfaces. Imagine turning on certain lights by touching parts on your wall or opening safes by hitting a series of painted buttons.

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