Monday, 10 September 2012

Link collection 10/09/2012

I've decided to occasionally collect up a few interesting links in one place to 1) ensure that I keep posting, and 2) accurately catalogue my thoughts on the future so that I can revisit them at any point. Most of my time these days in spent in a head space of the moment +/- 10 minutes, and everything outside of that time window tends to get lost in the info-flow of daily life. So yes. For history - because tomorrow's future is next week's past., everything is history in the making, and that's how I like to view things. So yes.

Today I found out about "soft", be-tentacled robots, that can grip things delicately. Which is an amazingly complex mechanism to sort out, but in a few iterations' time, this could be medically very valuable indeed. Not to mention, perhaps in rescue situations. Beautiful stuff.Tentacles-holding-objects.jpg

I also came across this little blighter... Remember BigDog, the "youtube sensation" from a few years ago that was officially taken up by DARPA and pretty much became the wet dreams of certain videogame fans across the globe? Well now it has a son. I am going to call it "SON OF BIGDOG" which is a much nicer name than its official title of "Legged Squad Support System (LS3)." Basically it has niftier software (it can follow you around like a big puppy!), it has a bigger body for more stuff to be packed onto it (d'aww it wants to be useful!), it has a self-righting mechanism in its barrel-shaped body (it's learning!), and it now has a definite face-like structure in a visual sensor array (a camera lol) surrounded by mesh (so cute!). I wish to purchase one and traipse it around in my mech, showing off to all the other pet owners. A few more generations down the line - when it becomes weaponised - I can teach it to "fetch" with enemies' skulls. 

Speaking of mechs... I haven't posted about this, but the world now has its first fully-functional, privately purchasable mech. I shit you not. It's a beautiful piece of engineering (albeit a bit slow) that you can pilot with your iPhone in the cab, or remotely(!). This "smile shot" thing... that's a vicious-cycle creator if there ever was one.

Out of interest, can anyone possibly have it out with me difference between hacking if you're disabled and grinding, if it's at this level? This man has fashioned some killer-looking prostheses out of scrap metal and wood, that are extraordinarily functional. 

Back to work: Sun Jifa, lost both his hands when a bomb he was creating for blast fishing in Guanmashan, Jilin province, northern China, exploded prematurely

Last little bit of gloriousness to inform you all of (and, of course, to re-inform my future self - hello you smug bastard). Whiskey. In. Space. Space whiskey. Orbital piss-up. International space station moonshine. Liquor of the outer heavens. However you want to slice it, this is fucking COOL.