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Tag: Mit

Miniature Machine Controlled by Heat and Electromagnetic Fields: TermiNature

Miniature Machine Controlled by Heat and Electromagnetic Fields: TermiNature
Last year we looked at Harvard University’s prototype for a robot that folds itself up from a flat shape into a spider-like form when exposed to heat. This small…device invented by MIT and TU Munich researchers has a similar feature, but I don’t know if I should call it a robot.

Sticky Actuators Use Air to Move Inanimate Objects: Noobmatics

Sticky Actuators Use Air to Move Inanimate Objects: Noobmatics
A group of researchers from the MIT and the University of Tokyo managed to breathe life into everyday objects with a cheap and easy-to-use pneumatic device. They call their invention the Sticky Actuator, a small plastic pouch that moves objects when air is pumped in or out of it.

Programmable Materials Move without Electronic or Mechanical Parts

Programmable Materials Move without Electronic or Mechanical Parts
A few years ago we saw a custom fabricated material with embedded actuators and magnets, which enable it to autonomously fold into a predetermined shape when subjected to electricity. MIT’s Self-Assembly Lab is working on creating carbon fiber, wood, textiles and other materials that can also change their shape on their own, but without any electromechanical parts involved.

THAW Lets Smartphones Interact with Computers Through Their Displays: Actual Drag and Drop

THAW Lets Smartphones Interact with Computers Through Their Displays: Actual Drag and Drop
Last year MIT’s Tangible Media Group went viral because of its real time shape-copying machine. But one of its latest efforts blows that machine out of the water. Called THAW, it’s a software system that allows smartphones and personal computers to communicate graphically through their respective displays.

Robot Folds Itself into a Usable Form and Walks Away

Robot Folds Itself into a Usable Form and Walks Away
A group of researchers working together from Harvard and MIT have created a cool folding robot that can transform itself from a flat sheet to a functioning robot and walk away without human intervention. Inspired by origami and natural folding structures, the robot is made from a flat sheet of paper and a sheet of polystyrene plastic.

Extra Robot Fingers Could One Day Help the Disabled, Elderly & StarCraft Pros

Extra Robot Fingers Could One Day Help the Disabled, Elderly & StarCraft Pros
Last month we saw MIT’s prototypes for wearable robot arms. Two mechanical engineers from the same university recently presented a similar robot, but on a smaller scale. Made by mechanical engineering professor Harry Asada and his student Faye Wu, the Supernumerary Robotic Fingers add two small limbs to complement the human hand.

MIT Creates Wearable Robot Arms: Paging Doctor Octopus

MIT Creates Wearable Robot Arms: Paging Doctor Octopus
In the future, people may wear robotic exoskeletons to give them increased strength and protection. But more power isn’t always the answer. Sometimes you just need an extra hand or two. That’s why researchers at MIT’s d’Arbeloff Laboratory are working on a pair of robotic arms that can be mounted on your shoulders or around your waist.

MIT Undergrads to Receive Bitcoins: College Currency

MIT Undergrads to Receive Bitcoins: College Currency
Starting next fall, new MIT undergrads will each be receiving $100 worth of bitcoins. This is thanks to the efforts of the MIT Bitcoin club, which wanted to jumpstart a Bitcoin ecosystem.

MIT FingerReader Reads Printed Text Aloud: Talk to the Hand

MIT FingerReader Reads Printed Text Aloud: Talk to the Hand
Braille helps visually impaired people read, but there is a lot of printed material that is never converted to that writing system. Blind people also miss out on using mobile devices because obviously they can’t feel the text on screen.

WiTrack Detects 3D Motion without Using Cameras or Controllers: Sight Unseen

WiTrack Detects 3D Motion without Using Cameras or Controllers: Sight Unseen
As shown by the Kinect, today’s cameras are powerful and cheap enough to provide accurate motion tracking. The same feat can be achieved by making the subject carry a motion sensor or a tracking device of some sort.

inFORM Dynamic Shape Display: Display See, Display Do

inFORM Dynamic Shape Display: Display See, Display Do
The touchscreen and app combo of today’s mobile devices makes one gadget act as many. Different apps display different interfaces, and the touchscreen lets you interact with those interfaces in a natural manner. But what if, aside from changing what you can see, your gadget’s display could also change its shape?

MIT SkyCall Uses Drones as Tour Guides

MIT SkyCall Uses Drones as Tour Guides
Nowadays, we often hear about unmanned aerial vehicles aka UAVs or drones in the news as next generation weapons of war. The researchers at MIT’s SENSEable City Lab want to dispel that notion and show people that this new technology can be used in more positive ways.

MIT Researchers Can Tell How Fast Your Heart is Beating By Video Monitoring

MIT Researchers Can Tell How Fast Your Heart is Beating By Video Monitoring
Researchers at MIT are constantly finding ways to use technology to improve people’s lives. This particular one will probably be most useful to those who might need remote healthcare services one day. After doing extensive work at MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory, these scientists explain that they have developed an algorithm that will allow them to determine a person’s heart rate based on a video feed of them.

Cardiio App Uses MIT Tech to Measure Your Heart Rate By Looking at Your Face

Cardiio App Uses MIT Tech to Measure Your Heart Rate By Looking at Your Face
I’ve got a heart rate monitor, but it’s tied to a strap that connects wirelessly to my Garmin 500 cycling computer. There are also numerous smartphone apps which can measure your pulse when you cover up the camera and flash with your fingertip.

MIT Student Constructs Mario Kart Racer, Cafeteria Runs out of Bananas

MIT Student Constructs Mario Kart Racer, Cafeteria Runs out of Bananas
Charles Guan, an MIT grad student, has created a working replica of the vehicles from Super Mario Kart. It is powered by four motors attached to the wheels and can reach speeds upwards of 26 mph.

Swÿp: Cross Device Drag-and-Drop

Swÿp: Cross Device Drag-and-Drop
If you’ve seen The Avengers or the previous Iron Man movies, you’ve probably been wowed by the computer interface that Tony Stark and his colleagues use, where they send data to by physically sliding or swiping screens to each other.