Scientists and engineers at Harvard and MIT have come up with a wicked cool self-assembling paper robot that puts itself together (sort of) and walks away. With about $100 of paper and plastic, along with some motors and batteries, it takes about four minutes for the transformation to happen and the robot to walk away. Check out the video after the break to see it in action. It may seem like a silly concept but every experiment is worth the data it brings.
This small lightweight type of robot could explore outer space and other dangerous environments, and get into cramped places for search-and-rescue missions, researchers said. But that’s just the start of what may be a long-envisioned robotic revolution.
This eventually could be as technology-changing as the three-dimensional printer, said experts unconnected with the study and Harvard robotics researcher Sam Felton, who is lead author of the paper published Thursday in the journal Science.
Felton and study co-author Daniela Rus of MIT say they see a time when someone who wants a dog-walking robot would go to a store that has specialized equipment to make the device — “some sort of robo-Kinkos,” Felton said.
And eventually the technology could produce more complex machines.
That last line is the key. Eventually this research will be expounded upon and someone will come up with a better way of doing the things exampled in this very research project. These baby steps are important to the future and to further innovation; there’s no way we can move forward if people aren’t willing to give something a proper go. What do you think of this research and this paper robot? Let us know in the comments below or on Google+, Facebook, and Twitter.