Search results for: origami

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In Robot News: Self-Folding Origami Robots And The Latest Iteration of ASIMO

Self-Folding-Robots-004In June GFR reported on robots that use shape-changing origami wheels to get around, and in the past few weeks, researchers have made even greater strides when it comes to integrating the art of folding into their robots. Scientists from Harvard and MIT (of course) have created an origami robot that can self-assemble from a flat pack and then run away.

As anyone who’s decent at origami knows, you can actually devise a pretty sophisticated structure via folding. The scientists used this potential, along with inspiration from natural systems (flower petals, proteins and amino acids, etc.) to create their robot. They laser-printed flat composites of the design, which can be punched out of paper and folded. They program the composite, basically telling it where, how, and how much to hinge and fold, and then battery power allows it to assemble itself in roughly four minutes. The same research group previously devised robots that could self-assemble from similar materials when heated, but this model delivers heat to the robots’ folding parts via electricity, not an oven.

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These Robots Have Origami Wheels That Can Change Shape

wheelI was never very good at making paper airplanes, but I’ve always had a thing for origami. My brain and my hands don’t seem to be naturally inclined toward the strategic folding of papers into three-dimensional shapes — although in elementary school I did master the art of making the fortune teller, otherwise known as the cootie catcher. Now that origami is being integrated into robotics, its geek cred has skyrocketed and I might need to give it another go.

It makes sense if you think about it. Turning two-dimensional materials into a three-dimensional shape that can actually do something is a process perfectly suited for robotics, particularly for their wheels, as demonstrated by a couple of research groups who presented at this month’s IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation.

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Challenge Yourself With Star Wars Origami

When it comes to the arts, I’m what some might call a novice, and what others might call less artistic than Picasso’s stool. I see things with my mind’s eye that just cannot possibly be communicated all the way down to my clumsy hands. The only reason I grow a beard is to hide all the fork wounds on my chin from when I miss my mouth. But I digress; origami is not my thing.

A recent Buzzfeed post was created to test the mental strength of all human beings, showcasing 10 diagrams for DIY Star Wars origami. This website has been around for years, and has a few other projects, like creatures from Pitch Black and Starship Troopers. But you have to put a limit on things. Ten diagrams is a round enough number. And I decided to try five of them.

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Brian K. Vaughan Is Out From Under Under The Dome

DomeI hadn’t read Stephen King’s Under the Dome before the show premiered on CBS last summer — I still haven’t — so I have no clue how faithful/unfaithful an adaptation it is. In fact, I didn’t know much about it at all, aside from a lingering impression that the concept didn’t sound like it had the narrative legs to expand to an ongoing television series. Pretty much the only reason I eventually sat down and watched Under the Dome’s first season a few weeks back was the involvement of writer Brian K. Vaughan, who has given us some of the best comics of the past decade, as well as having written for Lost. So now that I’ve learned that Vaughan has parted ways with Under the Dome, my interest in the show just folded like triple-jointed origami expert.

Vaughan revealed his departure from Under the Dome, which is due to return to CBS for a second season this summer, during a lengthy interview with Bleeding Cool (which is worth reading in its entirety if you’re at all a Vaughan fan). In lieu of an official announcement, he just dropped it casually when asked what his role in the show this season will be. Vaughan said:

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Affordable Paper Microscope Could Save Countless Lives

foldscopeSome of the most disease-afflicted places in the world are also the poorest. Illnesses like diarrhea, malaria, or e-coli are easily treatable with antibiotics or regular hygiene, but such measures are often unaffordable or impractical. Even if treatment is available and affordable, people with these ailments often don’t know they have them because there’s no easy way to detect them. Manu Prakash, a Stanford University bio-engineering professor, seeks to address the cost of basic medical equipment and make it available to anyone and everyone, and has developed a microscope made primarily from a piece of paper.

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Mass Effect Papercraft Characters Are Massively Impressive

JackSideI’ll fully concede, “papercraft” was not even a thing that was anywhere on my radar, but if you’d asked me about it I would probably have assumed you meant origami or maybe some nice collage work. These papercraft creations by DeviantArtist TankBall are on a whole other level, one significantly above the little paper dude with the erection Gaff made in Blade Runner. Honestly, part of me doesn’t even want to know how these things were made; I’d rather treat it like a magic trick, just sit back and be impressed. It doesn’t hurt that TankBall has replicated two characters from my favorite game series of all time, and indeed one of my favorite science fictional things of all time, Mass Effect.

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