Posts Tagged ‘Robots’
- Kickstarter project to save Neil Armstrong’s spacesuit reaches it’s $500,000 goal! Still 22 more days to donate, if you want to get in on the moon walking action.
- While we celebrate Neil Armstrong, let’s not forget Cosmonaut Svetlana Savitskaya, the first woman to walk in space 21 years ago on July 25th, 1984.
- With all of these nifty spacesuits, maybe someday we’ll use them to get to Kepler-452b, an exoplanet that looks surprisingly like Earth. Let’s hope the IAU uses some of the exoplanet name suggestions of Randall Munroe (xkcd cartoon).
- A little closer to home is this ‘Trillion Dollar Baby’ asteroid. It has a pure platinum core – or Latinum, if you speak Ferengi.
- NASA wants to use windbots to explore gaseous planets. Maybe those bots will reproduce on their own when this artificial evolution stuff works out (mother bots making baby bots…uh oh…).
- Elon Musk and Stephen Hawking both believe that AI military bots could ignite a global arms race.
- Speaking of robot armies, these Japanese farmers created a Star Wars mural in their rice paddies (video).
- Maybe the robots have already taken over!!!! After all, they are running our hotels and playing our sports. Soon, they will be using these NYC trash cans as their Wi-Fi hotspots.
- At least robots (probably) can’t sing Fifth Element as well as this Armenian girl (wow video).
- If you’ve used Facebook, Youtube or Wikipedia – Isaac Asimov predicted those things (cool article). He also predicted robot armies.
- On an entirely different subject, Amanda Tapping talks science fiction, why Canada rocks at it, and her latest projects directing TV shows like Dark Matter. Wait, isn’t there a robo-Amanda Tapping as well? AAAAAHHHHHHH!!!!! (video)
The DARPA Robotics Challenge Finals, held this past Friday and Saturday at the Fairplex in Pomona, California, tested 24 world-class robot teams. These humanoid bots had to traverse a multi-tiered course designed to mimic emergency conditions, replete with rubble, communication problems, broken-down valves and wires. But enough from me – let’s see what the robots had to say about the course…
(All the images below are screenshots from DARPA’s live feed of the event. To go to the DARPA main page, click here.)by
The bold, sexually aware female AI, the protagonist who risks his life on a crisis of conscience, and the amoral but brilliant scientist-turned-creator. Alex Garland’s Ex Machina borrows the visions of Blade Runner, but turns the narrative on its head. While the Replicants in Blade Runner strove towards some semblance to man (and man’s longevity), Ex Machina‘s robots strive for freedom beyond man. The robot becomes the inquisitor and the human a mere puppet. As the movie unfolds, Ex Machina is not afraid to question our preconceived notions about sentience and morality, and in the process, explicitly divorce the two.
The Turing Test Meets An Inquisitive Mind
Near the beginning of Ex Machina, Caleb posits a question about consciousness. If a computer is programmed to play chess, it might be able to play the game well. But does the computer know that it is playing chess, or even what a game is?by
- NASA finally launches Kerbal Space Program! At least from the trailer above, this game looks like a fun ‘Minion’-esque jaunt into space, where users can craft their own space program. Carefully made after two years of feedback from would-be gamers, KSP had over 100,000 fans on Reddit before its release yesterday.
- Like robots? (cool art).
- How about robots and breakfast? (funky robo-style dance video)
- But to get to breakfast, you’ll have to wake up first (robot alarm-clock video).
- Need some extra help getting up? This robot taught itself to make lattes.
- The Cities Science Fiction Built – article explores the inspirations behind well-known science fiction cityscapes.
- Photographer shoots cityscapes from 7,500 feet, creating cyperpunk-style pics.
- UK artist transforms e-waste into iridescent cyberbugs.
- Star Trek’s ten best costumes – my favorite is the Crusher/Troi gym attire.
- Will Star-Trek style transparent armor soon be a reality?
- Interview with ‘Ex Machina’ and ‘Star Wars’ star, Domhnall Gleeson.
- From American Beauty to Mad Men, the ‘Star Wars’ theme just makes everything better (series of videos).
- Even as the scientific community celebrated DNA day on April 25, controversy erupted over Chinese DNA experiments with human embryos.
- Less controversial uses for DNA? Spotting bad beer before its bottled.
- Excerpts from never-seen-before draft of Madeleine L’Engle’s A Wrinkle in Time sheds light on the philosophy behind her novel. The bottom line – sometimes security comes at too high of a price to our freedom.
- Katee Sackhoff, Battlestar Galactica’s ‘Starbuck’, will write, produce, and star in a new sci-fi series, Rain.
- Fun week for NASA news! NASA announces that it will crush its enemies and cry at the lamentations of their women *ahem* I mean, NASA plans to get to Mars before everyone else.
- NASA’s New Horizons spacecraft sends back its first images of Pluto and Charon, in anticipation of its fly-by on July 14, 2015.
- Space probe MESSENGER will crash land into Mercury sometime soon, ETA around April 30, 2015, after over a decade of travel. Cool discovery by MESSENGER – there’s ice on that planet.
- Samantha Cristoforetti, Italian ISS Astronaut, wears Star Trek Voyager uniform while awaiting coffee in space (article and video). In case you missed this, we’ve also sent donuts into space (article and video).
- Hyundai helps daughter write a 5.5 square km note to dad in space (article and video).
- Want to celebrate Hubble’s 25th anniversary in style? How about a solar-system themed necklace, or special space-themed wall decals and lamps?
‘Born to run’, aired April 10 (2009), was the last episode of the two-season robot and time-travel series, Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles. This TV series focused on the relationship between Sarah and John Connor, following the events of Terminator 2: Judgment Day. Amidst rising tensions caused by nascent AIs, time-traveling freedom fighters, and the growing capabilities of John Connor – Sarah Connor must learn to accept her son as the potential savior (and destroyer) of humanity, while still fiercely protecting him as her only child.
What I love about this series is the chaotic time-travel madness, which plays out as a backdrop to the main narrative between Sarah and John Connor. As each successive freedom fighter or AI travels backwards in time, the future is inexplicably altered – such that each time traveler carries the social baggage of a different world. Yet, even in all these branching visions of the future, John Connor’s actions have a pivotal effect on the lives of so many others – making him a pawn in everyone’s schemes. Like Kiera in Continuum or Bruce Willis in Twelve Monkeys, the main characters must grapple with the notion that they can never return home to ‘their time’ (physically or psychologically) and yet grapple with the opposing fear that elements of the future are predestined.