Next time you see a cockroach, don't scurry away faster than it can flee. In fact, if you're a lover of the weirder side of life, the intrusive insect could represent one heck of a science project.
If Borg ships have vermin on them, they look exactly like a project researchers at North Carolina State University are working on.
These intrepid scientists have taken a lightweight chip with a wireless receiver and transmitter and attached it to a cockroach like a little backpack. For the record, large Madagascar hissing cockroaches are the roach of choice. … Read more
Leaked from today's 404 episode:
- Google Glass makes catwalk debut at New York Fashion Week.
- The Fifth Element inspired: Remote-controlled roaches to the rescue.
- Odd "digital rituals" we perform to make technology serve us.
- Will putting a car remote under your chin increase its range?
Bathroom break video: Pong traffic light in Germany.
Video voice mail: Matt is now the ultimate trucker.Episode 1,127 Subscribe in iTunes (audio) | Subscribe in iTunes (video) | Subscribe in RSS Audio | Subscribe in RSS Video
Sometimes I wonder what lives inside my Comcast cable box. Just occasionally, it will behave erratically, twitching nervously at the sight of "Top Chef."
A story that has emerged from Aurora, Ill., suggests an emergent solution: creepy-crawly creatures.
I am grateful to the Chicago Sun-Times for describing the dilemma of one Comcast customer, Antonio Munez, who claims that after the company installed a cable box, cockroaches crawled out of it.
It is unclear whether the roaches were protesting Munoz refusal to watch cooking shows. However, Munoz says he suspects the equipment was old and adds that no one … Read more
We have to admit that we were not at all looking forward to reviewing Cockroach on Desktop. We reviewed Drive Software's Fly on Desktop not too long ago and found it to be quite realistic, and we were not thrilled about the idea of having lifelike cockroaches crawling across our screen. Cockroach on Desktop delivered, though, whether we wanted it to or not. If you're looking for a way to gross out your colleagues or family members, this program is a winner.
Cockroach on Desktop appears as a small icon in the system tray, and right-clicking it gives … Read more
The Verizon iPhone goes on sale, and no one lines up. We'll talk about what it means for HP to bring WebOS to PCs, and why are we talking about the iPad 3 when we have yet to see the iPad 2. Plus, nothing says I love you like a hissing cockroach.Subscribe: iTunes (MP3) | iTunes (320x180) | iTunes (640x360) | RSS (MP3) | RSS (320x180) | RSS (640x360)… Read more
The robotic hand is getting a makeover, and it is inspired not by computing power but rather by the flexible and springy legs of tiny-brained cockroaches.
It turns out that robotic hands, which can inform the development of prosthetic ones, are rarely able to perform simple tasks that require dexterity, such as picking up a delicate object without first knocking it over.
Key to being able to grasp an object is the ability to quickly assess the relationship between that which is doing the grasping (i.e. a hand) and that which is being grasped (i.e. the Motorola Xoom).
Many mammals, humans among them, compensate for any errors in navigating this relationship by softening their fingers to make the grasp more flexible. Many artificial hands have been designed with this flexibility in mind, but the computing power required to control all the sensors and motors was so high that the hands were, by extension, quite slow.
"We took the opposite approach and tried to understand the fundamental mechanics using good mechanical design practices," says Aaron Dollar, an assistant professor of engineering at Yale, in an Inside Science News Service report. The goal was simply to engineer a hand that was able to adapt quickly to grasp a variety of shapes.… Read more
Researchers in California are developing a simple robot cockroach that can be assembled in an hour, move quickly, and survive 92-foot falls.
Robot cockroaches have been designed before, but DASH seems relatively simple to put together before it can be used to creep everyone out.
The 4-inch, 16-gram bug is put together by folding cardboard and polymer sheets. A DC motor runs the six legs while a servomotor bends the frame to induce left or right turns.
It … Read more