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May 17, 2004


Because we are way ahead of the rest of the world when it comes to important technological advances.

(Thanks to Garret Wood)


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Yeah, it makes sense. From Livermore (ew, liver) California.

Garret, you've been a busy boy with this blog this morning, haven't you?

How could Dave pass up an origami folding robot?

Call me when they got a robot that can shake a good gin martini.

Very disappointed! Actually went to the website, (yes I'm bored)and the robot is not what you conjur up when you think of a "robot". It's basically an assembly line type of device. Looks like a real smart envolope maker.

Also on the website was this disclaimer: Warning -- most of
the preliminary research discussed in the proposal has been made
obsolete by recent work.

Oh well, I guess you have to work fast in this line of research.

it warms my heart to know that we have nothing better to spend our research money on. thank god there are no terminal diseases to cure or anything, because then it would really suck to be spending our time on something like an ORIGAMI FOLDING ROBOT!


It's not the fact they are making an origami folding robot, its the methods and and techniques they will learn during this exercise that is important. Advances in technology do not spring fullly formed from the minds of great thinkers but are the result of little steps along the way.

Personally, aside from the cutesy topic, I found the article interesting. It opened my eyes to the problems with robot design and how learning to deal with "soft materials" could lead to some breakthroughs in machine design. But then again, I'm an engineer and a techno-geek...

Who knows, maybe the next great scientific advance can be traced back to the ideas proposed or problems encountered by the researchers who made the origami robot.

Does this mean we'll have to come up with some new retro-nomenclature (i.e., analog clock, acoustic guitar) to distinguish hand-made origami from that made by robots?

Or should it be the other way around. Meca-Origami, Robogami or Factorygami might do the trick. Presuming that there's a trick to be done.

Thanks, Gumby. I suppose there are possiblities in the field of prosthetics: making artificial limbs that can perform more human-like functions.

And, now that I think about it, this could be useful in the rescue robots who help find survivors: perhaps the robots would one day be able to perform basic first aid until a human rescuer could reach the victim.

(I R Geek.)

Maybe the post office can get an orgami robot to sort their mail. Then the could send my mail as cranes or swans instead of shredded. I mean, maybe the robots are shredding stuff out of sheer boredom. If I had to sort 10,000,000 badly written enveloes a day, I would shred a few too. Orgami is so soothing.

badly written or misspelled *envelopes*

Is anyone else having deja vu to the last "science wastes time / it's not waste it leads to innovation" discussion we had?

Garret: yes.

Garret: yes. ;)

And I still say, as I said then, this can't hold a candle to the guys who invented the beer-tossing gizmo. Now THAT was an invention worth having!

"People do really neat things with their hands. Can we make robots do these things?"

As Kelly Bundy says, "The mind wobbles"

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