Head DOWN! The DARwIN-OP robotics platform has a head like Sputnik, mostly spherical but pointy in parts. The open source robotics kit has been spied in a new version that has open software and hardware along with an open platform for some all open robotic lovin’. I want one; it looks cool in a robot bipedal bunny sort of way.
The robot kit is developed by RoMeLa at Virginia Tech with help by Purdue University, the University of Pennsylvania, and Robotis Co. The line of bots have been in development since 2004. The open source design is intended to encourage geeks to toy with the hardware and software to create their own mods. There are numerous software implementations for the kit with C++, Python, LabVIEW, MATLAB, and more.
CAD files are available publically for the design and construction of the bot. The thing is rumored to cost about $8,000 (USD) to build which is about half the price of competitive products on the market. The bot is 17.9″ tall, weighs 2.8kg, and has 20 degrees of freedom. Its controller is an Atom Z530 processor with 1GB of RAM, 4GB of storage, and it can run Linux, XP, or Windows 7.