Flying robots to start serving in restaurants by end-2015

TODAY reports: Infinium-Serve, the autonomous flying robotic waiters, will be first launched at one of Timbre Group’s five outlets in Singapore.

SINGAPORE: Restaurant-goers in Singapore can expect to be served by autonomous flying robots – the world’s first commercial attempt – by the end of next year.

Infinium-Serve, the autonomous flying robotic waiters, will be first launched at one of Timbre Group’s five outlets in Singapore. Infinium Robotics CEO Woon Junyang estimated the project to cost a “low seven-figure sum” for the five outlets, subject to final negotiations and certain variables of the actual deployment of the robots.

Infinium Robotics signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Timbre Group on Oct 31. Both companies are seeking productivity-related government grants to help offset deployment costs.

Mr Woon said he is confident that such robotic solutions will help alleviate the Singapore’s labour crunch. Introducing this technology into restaurants would take away mundane tasks of serving food and drinks, and allow human waiters to focus on higher-value tasks such as getting feedback from customers, he said.

“This will result in an enhanced dining experience which will eventually lead to increased sales and revenue for the restaurants,” he added.

A prototype of Infinium-Serve was showcased to Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong at the inaugural launch of the National Productivity Month in early October.

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Army Developing Micro Rotor Drone

This Is The Army’s New Pocket Drone

This Is The Army's New Pocket Drone

The Cargo Pocket Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance program, known also as CP-ISR, is a new nano-drone concept dreamed up by the folks at the Army’s Natick Soldier Research Center. Where as most unmanned aircraft look to provide info as to what is going on over the next hill, or far over horizon, CP-ISR is all about looking around the next doorway or hedge.

You can read all about what the future of micro combat drones will look like by clicking here.

This Is The Army's New Pocket Drone

The whole idea is to bring the unmanned surveillance concept down to the individual squad, and eventually the individual soldier level, and to do so in an affordable and expendible package. The Black Hornet is still in development, and a hardened, more powerful military grade data-link is on the way, along with low light video capabilities and improved controlability for operating in indoor, and other dense environments.

Eventually, these little humming bird sized craft will be able to follow special forces teams into high-threat indoor environments, or scout behind barriers and into dark windows for sniper teams. Who knows, eventually they may even become deadly weapons themselves.

Other similar systems are being developed by different military R&D houses and defense contractors, but the Black Hornet seems to be one of the most developed and well regarded at this time. Regardless of if it makes it into widespread production and deployment, it is safe to say that the age of micro drone technology has arrived, and life will never be the same again because of it.

Image source: US Army

Tyler Rogoway is a defense journalist and photographer who maintains the website Foxtrot Alpha for Jalopnik.com You can reach Tyler with story ideas or direct comments regarding this or any other defense topic via the email address Tyler@Jalopnik.com

Nixie: A Wearable Camera Drone in Development

Nixie The Wearable Camera That Flys On Demand

nixie-wearable-drone

This just may take the cake in the selfie department. Nixie is a tiny drone that you wear on your wrist. When released, the drone flies around you shooting video, eventually returning back. Winner of Intel’s Make It Wearable contest, the Nixie wearable flying camera may just be a prototype at the moment, but with a powerful team and money behind them, you can expect to see it come to market soon.

Nixie is the first wearable and flyable camera that you carry on your wrist like a watch. A swiveling camera sits at the middle of four flexible bands, each with an extendable propeller. To launch the wearable drone, simply unfold the bands from beneath your wrist and Nixie is ready for takeoff.

Once aloft, the drone is designed to detect your presence and fly around you, pointing the camera at you in order to film your adventures. Nixie was built on Intel’s Edison wearables development system that gives it enough computing power to do things such as track you and avoid obstacles.

Check out the cool footage below that was captured on the Nixie prototype. Now let’s see how quickly these get banned in National Parks….

http://flynixie.com/

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Samsung SGR-A1 Robot Sentry Is One Cold Machine

samsung sgr a1A Samsung Group subsidiary has worked on a robot sentry that they call the SGR-A1, and this particular robot will carry a fair amount of weapons that ought to make you think twice about crossing the borders of South Korea illegally – as it has been tested out at the demilitarized zone along the border over with its neighbor, North Korea. The SGR-A1 will be able to detect intruders with the help of machine vision (read: cameras), alongside a combination of heat and motion sensors.

The whole idea of the Samsung SGR-A1 is to let this military robot sentry do the work of its human counterparts over at the demilitarized zone at the South and North Korea border, so that there will be a minimal loss of life on the South Korean side just in case things turn sour between the two neighbors.

First announced in 2006 (where obvious improvements have been made since, and I am not surprised if much of it remained as classified information), this $200,000, all weather, 5.56 mm robotic machine gun also sports an optional grenade launcher. It will make use of its IR and visible light cameras to track multiple targets and remains under the control of a human operator from a remote location. Basically, it claims to be able to “identify and shoot a target automatically from over two miles (3.2 km) away.” Scary! When used on the DMZ, this robot will not distinguish between friend or foe – anyone who crosses the line is deemed as an enemy.

Filed in Military >Robots. Read more about Samsung.

NHK balloon camera aims to make bird’s-eye shots easy

Link

By 

February 23, 2012

NHK's gyro-stabilized balloon camera rig

NHK’s gyro-stabilized balloon camera rig

Image Gallery (11 images)

For those who dream of one day shooting aerial footage without the bulky cranes and cables to hold everything aloft, Japan’s NHK may have just the thing: a tethered, balloon-mounted, four-axis gyro-stabilized camera rig that weighs in at about 2 kg (4.4 lb), can soar up to 300 m (984 ft) and takes its commands from the re-purposed remote control for a toy helicopter.

Once airborne, the camera can “pan, tilt, and zoom as usual,” NHK’s Tsuyoshi Sekiguchi explained to DigInfo. “In addition, the gimbal works to keep the direction fixed, so even if the camera shakes, it stays facing the same direction, and the image is stable. To put it simply, four gimbal axes are controlled, and they have gyros, and the direction is kept constant using the gyro values.”

Although versatile and easy to set up, the balloon platform does have certain limitations. Like most lighter-than-air craft, its large surface area makes it susceptible to strong breezes, so the NHK rig is limited to operating at wind speeds of 7 m/sec (about 15 mph) or less. The balloon’s top payload is about 4 kg (just under 9 lbs) so only smaller cameras can go aloft for the time being. The engineers did add a safety mechanism that brings the rig safely down should its tether get cut, so at least worries about losing everything are minimized.

NHK's gyro-stabilized balloon camera rig

NHK’s gyro-stabilized balloon camera rig

As the video below shows, the rig is fairly adept at damping unwanted motion, especially at more modest elevations. “The height actually used for a bird’s-eye view is about 30-50m (98-164 ft) because that’s the most practical altitude, so we’ve designed this system to work stably at that height,” Sekiguchi added.

Currently there’s no word on price point or availability, but NHK claims ease of use and cost reduction were two big motivations for the design, so if all goes well, we may be seeing a lot more of this technology at games and big events in the not-too-distant future.

Source: DigInfo

About the Author
Randolph JonssonA native San Franciscan, Randolph attended the U.S. Naval Academy at Annapolis, Maryland before finding his way to the film business. Eventually, he landed a job at George Lucas’ Industrial Light + Magic, where he worked on many top-grossing films in both the camera and computer graphics departments. A proud member of MENSA, he’s passionate about technology, optimal health, photography, marine biology, writing, world travel and the occasional, well-crafted gin and tonic!   All articles by Randolph Jonsson

RYNO Motorcycles: changing the game one wheel at a time

http://autos.yahoo.com/news/ryno-motorcycles-changing-game-one-wheel-time-202514361.html?soc_src=mediacontentstory

reposted from Yahoo! Autos

RYNO Motorcycles: changing the game one wheel at a time

Boldride

By Jeff PerezJanuary 21, 2014 3:25 PM

Anyone who rides a motorcycle will tell you that there’s nothing like the thrill of riding headlong on the open road with the wind in your face and worries at your back. A motorcycle is truly one of man’s best friends. But what if someone changed the formula — a formula, mind you, that’s been relatively unchanged for a over a hundred years.

Chris Hoffmann may just be that man, and his one-wheeled RYNO motorcycle may be the next great invention in the motorcycle world.

But what exactly is a RYNO? First off, it’s a prototype– one that’s been in construction for nearly seven years already. Additionally, it’s a single-wheeled, zero-emissions motorcycle, that uses similar — albeit more advanced — technology to the Segway.

video

How did Hoffmann’s idea come about? Well it all started with inspiration from his young daughter, he stated in a recent interview with Gregg Rosenzweig of Yellow Pages:

“My 13-year-old daughter saw a one-wheeled motorcycle in a video game seven years ago. She asked me if I could build one…I started playing around with designs and seven years later, here we are.”

Right now this new technology is still in the prototype stages, but when the RYNO takes to production — hopefully sometime this year — it will cost $5,295 from its production facility outside of Portland, Oregon. Hoffmann and his team are also in the process of setting up dealers nationwide so that potential customers can come in and try them out for themselves.

 

 

Source: Yellow Pages