Boston Dynamics – SpotMini, the giraffe robot

Boston Dynamics has shown a miniaturized version of the robot “Spot” which can be equipped with an elongated neck. It is a fascinating machine with high level of precision, paired with a kind of natural movement.

Robots will support us in many, even unexpected, tasks and are one of the most expressive ways to bring machine intelligence to (our) live(s).

More information: www.theverge.com

Magic Leap – Star Wars in your living room

Magic Leap founder Rony Abovitz announced the partnership with Lucasfilms division xLab to create new experiences for the mixed reality platform. Therefore, a “semi-secret” joint lab with members of both companies will be setup. Today, not much is known about the technology behind the Magic Leap platform, but everybody who has tried it, seems to be totally amazed and this teaser video is also looking very promising (again). Let’s see.

Augmented reality devices like the Microsoft Hololens or the Magic Leap are extending the visual reality with an additional synthetic layer and are opening complete new possibilities for guidance, info- and entertainment systems.

More information: www.wired.com

 

KnuEdge – neural chip company unveiled

Ex head of NASA unveiled the company KnuEdge, which started ten years ago and worked undercover until now. They are developing a high efficient, brain like computer chip, which is also scalable by combining multiples of them together.

Deep neural networks are key players of artificial intelligence. They are simulating basic information processing of the brain and are more and more used in many products.

knu

More information: www.bloomberg.com

A.I. foosball-table

Some students (computer engineering) at the Brigham Young University created an artificial intelligence foosball-table which is able to beat human foosball-players. The software tracks with the help of a camera (positioned over the table) the ball and operates the rods and players – and behaves like a human player: It anticipates, kicks and even scores.

This project impressively shows that computers do have the chance to assume human tasks – and sometimes operate much more faster.

More information: https://news.byu.edu

smart papers with RFID

The University of Washington, Disney Research and Carnegie Mellon University worked on the task to make a common piece of paper connect or communicate with the digital world. They use RFID tags and just print or draw them onto the paper (of course with special conductive ink) – and create a new way to build small, lightweight and interactive interfaces.

To make this possible a reader device is necessary and needed to be placed in the same room. Based on unique identifiers the reader is able to differentiate between several RFID tags and detect their signals and possible signal-deviations. Special algorithms enable the reader to assign these deviations to various interactions like touches, swipes etc.

Obviously this is a good and simple way to equip analog items with a digital experience.

More information: http://www.washington.edu

HoloFlex is the world’s first flexible holographic smartphone

The HoloFlex is the closest thing we’ve had so far to a holographic truly flexible phone. Move the display to see 3D objects from different angles and bend the phone to change the angle further.

Mobile innovation can be more than adding higher pixel density diplays to future devices. This is a example for it.

More information: http://www.theverge.com

Real-World Pong

Indipendent maker Daniel Perdomo has created a physical version of Pong, the Atari game from 1972. Without any prior knowledge of electronics, he managed to build this amazing prototype as a side project over the last two years. His expertise in graphic design (his daily job is in advertising) shows in the well crafted and beautiful details.

In a time of high-tech virtual reality, such examples of “materialized low-tech virtuality” are pleasantly surprising.

More info: www.facebook.com/TABLEPONGPROJECT