Idris Elba, Rob Kazinsky and director Guillermo Del Toro on the set of "Pacific Rim."
(Photo by Kerry Hayes) Melded Minds Control Robots in ‘Pacific Rim’

Guillermo del Toro never fails to create an imaginative, breathtaking world in his pictures — and his upcoming giant monster flick “Pacific Rim” promises to continue this trend. Now I’m a long-time Godzilla/Gamera fan, so naturally he had me at

The future of skin? (Hemera) What is self-healing plastic skin?

Skin is pretty amazing stuff. It protects us. It repairs itself when injured. Oh yeah, and it serves as one of our primary ways of experiencing the world around us — everything from sensing a slight chill in the air

Robot Humor: BigDog Walking Robot Parodied

Stop me if you’ve heard this one. Boston Dynamics’s DARPA-funded BigDog robot quadruped is an amazing machine and allows us to imagine a future in which robotic walkers provide support on our streets and out on the battlefield.I mean, just

Blow Your Mind: The Pooping Duck or When Robots Digest

Step right up and behold a marvel of 18th century robotics! See the Jacques de Vaucanson’s fabulous digesting duck, the clockwork miracle capable of reproducing the biological miracles of ingestion, digestion and defecation! In this episode of Stuff to Blow

The Pooping Duck: Marvel of 18th Century Robotics

Radiolab’s recent “A Clockwork Miracle” episode concerns a sixteenth-century mechanical monk, but Jad also briefly mentions the wonders of a robotic pooping duck from the 1700s. Yep, you read that right: a centuries-old automaton designed to digest food and poop

Mind-blowing Video: Robot Boxers of Fact and Fantasy

Anyone who has ever played “Rock ‘Em Sock ‘Em Robots” knows that artificially intelligent machines exist to punch the bejesus out of each other for our viewing enjoyment. Really, what other uses would we have for one of humanity’s greatest

SFSL Podcast Roundup: Robots! Compost! Worms!

Like most males of my demographic, I’ve been playing a lot of “Red Dead Redemption” of late on the old Xbox 360 and am suffering from a severe hankering to use excessive cowboy speak at work. So I’ll go ahead

Stuff from the Science Lab Roundup: Road Trip to FIRST

Did you know that some high schools give out a varsity letter in robotics these days? And that some schools send off their robotics teams to matches with a hearty pep rally? You get what you celebrate, says FIRST President

More Robots to Manhandle Human Corpses

Yes, if the prospect of corpse-eating warbots wasn’t enough, Swiss engineers are keeping the dream of a horrifying and ghoulish robotic future alive with Virtobot, which will “not only study dead bodies virtually, but create a digital copy of the

My Favorite Organic Farmer Is a Robot

With increased focus on smaller farms, slow food and organic cultivation methods, it was only a matter of time till the robots shook hands with hippies and got serious about growing some arugula. Enter the GrowBot: A partnership between the

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