Dexter robo-arm dreaming and scheming,Asteroid Mining and Dog Brained MRIs ?

Good Morning Tech Bandits!

Raccoon Dentistry

It’s a good day to talk robots, no? I think every day is a good day to talk robots but that might just be me…as I was doing just that last night, when I was chatting with my friends at Haddington Dynamics(HD).

HD make this incredible 3d printed and open source (meaning everyone has access to how it’s made and programmed) robotic arm called Dexter. They also engineer owner customizable robotic factories that use their software and robotics to automate all kinds of things. So, let’s meet Dexter!

Dexter HDI

And this kind of blew my mind with possibilities… here’s Dexter taking the human movements from one arm and reduces them by 100 times so it can actually work with tiny electronics that our shakey human hands couldn’t handle!

The whole point of Dexter is that it can be customized and programmed easily to automate things for people. Robots are perfect for doing dumb repetitive or dangerous jobs that might be bad for humans. Since I’m lucky enough to be talking to them directly, I thought it would be cool if us Bandits came up with our own ideas for things we’d want robotic arms like this to do for us.

Because I’m a film and TV VFX nerd …I immediately started thinking about how robotics like this could be used to control cameras and lights on film sets. Up until now it’s been crazy expensive to have computer controlled cameras on film sets. And yet that’s what’s need to do any kind of cloning or complex, or moving slow motion stuff. They all rely on a perfectly repeated camera move so that multiple shots can be combined into one.

So what do you think? If we can come up with some really cool ideas about what we could do with robotic arms like this, we might even get a chance to actually try them out?!

Speaking of thinking… one of our fabulous patrons sent me this article… I think it’s because our new mutt princess Huzzah! is so good at doing what I tell her? (and yes, that is sarcasm):

I thought this was kind of cool… and not just the idea of a dog that could sit still long enough to get an MRI!

Good Dog
Yep that’s a pug alright!

We can actually see how the dog’s brains are reacting to the toys and treats they are getting along with the different sounds and words. Here’s BBC’s video on the process.

BBC’s news piece on Dog MRIs

Which begs the next question…should I see if I can stick our Brain Computer Interface to Huzzah’s! muppet princess head and wave pizza at her?

Live Banditry Updates

As per usual we veered a little off course… but that’s what I love…especially when all that veering takes us into space! Bratlett surprised me a little by jumping in with his own research…I guess this whole TechBandits thing might actually work! ;-). He had watched the latest Kurzgesagt – In a Nutshell video on Asteroid Mining… and he’s not wrong, the whole process sounds fracking amazing!

And then he confessed to actually enjoying another of their videos about the oceans:

If you’re not subscribed to Kurzgesagt, then I suggest you do now… before your kid, your parent or your teacher, starts knowing more than you do!

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