Disaster-Mitigating Robots Battle for $2 Million Pentagon Prize

On June 5th, the Pentagon will hold the final round of its Robotics Challenge, where 25 teams from around the world will vie for a $2 million prize to see whose robot can perform best amidst a simulated disaster zone. But there's more at stake than just money. The Pentagon hopes one day such robots might save lives.

A New Contender in Trial And Error—The Robot That Learns Like You and I

Robots that can learn? Yes they can, at least with these new algorithms. A UC Berkeley research team has created algorithms that allow robots to use trial and error to learn motor tasks. This is a process that is much closer to the ways that humans think and learn, making it a major artificial intelligence milestone.

Octopus Arm Inspires Future Surgical Tool

A group of scientists in Italy have taken their inspiration from the octopus, creating a robotic arm that can bend, squeeze, and stretch through even cluttered environments. The device was created specifically for surgeons who need to access confined or remote areas of the body more easily.
A 3D silicon microstructure. (J. Rogers, University of Illinois)

New Pop-Up 3D Structures Mimic Neural Circuitry

Who knew that children's pop-up books could provide so much knowledge. According to researchers, scientists can now make complex microscopic 3D shapes that model brain circuitry and blood vessels by mimicking classic children's pop-up books.
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