October 17, 2011, 11:29 AM —
Robots build cars and have Three Laws thanks to Isaac Asimov, but news shows like cute, even in China. Result? A new video of a robot playing Ping-Pong, this time against another robot.
China loves Ping-Pong, but the skills needed for a robot to play are formidable. The two in this video took four years to develop at the Zhejiang Unversity. Wu and Kong have dual cameras mounted like eyes in a humanoid head that grab 120 images per second, enough to track the ball in flight. 30 different motors replicate the movement of their shoulder, elbow, and wrist to keep the game going for longer than one might think.
Commenters underplay the technology for quick jokes and predictions of the future modeled after Teminator. It doesn't help that Topio, a robot developed by the Vietnamese robotics firm TOSY, hid the news in 2009 looking like a cross between the Terminator, a Cylon, and maybe a Storm Trooper. Good thing Wu and Kong are cuter, and seem to play better as well.
Unleash the cheap jokes
Just make sure you're wearing pants around those things! (assuming you're a guy)
Noumenon on physorg.com
I didnt believe it till I saw it......I didnt knew humans can do something like that.
Djincss on physorg.com
Cue the scary music
Ping-pong may be a silly demonstration, but the ability to play means robotics has made more advances in less time than many thought possible. Are you ready for your Roomba to grow up?