Recently in…Robotics

Last week, we looked at the world of robot employment. From comedians and security guards to hitchhikers, we found that robots are taking on some non-traditional trades. After conducting a bit more research, it would appear that we’ve just begun to scratch the surface of emerging robot professions. This week’s “Recently in” takes a look at four robots breaking into the news broadcast, fishing, automotive repair and education industries.

Meet the multilingual robot newscaster with a very human face

Kodomoroid: a robot prepared to deliver bad news.
Kodomoroid: a robot prepared to deliver bad news.

This month, the “Android: What is human?” exhibit opened at Japan’s National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation. Kodomoroid, a robot capable of reciting global news reports in several voices and languages is among the featured robots. In a demonstration, Kodomoroid read the news without stumbling and to make sure robots still creep us out, she can speak in a squeaky teenage girl voice one minute and sound like a gravely-voiced long-haul trucker the next. Stay classy Cybertron. Don’t act like you’re not impressed, Ron Burgundy.

These jellyfish-killing robots could save the fishing industry billions per year

By many accounts jellyfish are reproducing like rabbits and their sting is being felt in several industries across the globe. Believe it or not, jellyfish swarms have been responsible for shutting down nuclear power plants, capsizing vessels and eradicating salmon farms. Hyun Myung, director of the Urban Robotics Lab at the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology, decided to take action when the South Korean marine industry lost an estimated $300 million to jellyfish swarms. His answer to our jellyfish problem is JEROS: Jellyfish Elimination Robotic Swarm (sounds like a codename worthy of its own summer blockbuster or at least a Saturday morning cartoon). JEROS track jellyfish in teams of three and can liquefy their gelatinous foes at a clip of 900 kilograms per hour. Watch JEROS’ version of the Thundercloud formation below:

Audi’s new fleet of robots will supervise its local mechanics

Meet your new robot overlord supervisor. Audi is bringing telepresence robots to an Audi dealership near you. The Audi Robotic Telepresence robot uses cameras and a screen to beam technicians from Audi headquarters into 100 dealerships in the U.S. Audi believes these extra eyes will allow local mechanics to benefit from the expertise provided by its top techs. This in theory should also provide customers with improved service experiences, both in speed and accuracy. Another added benefit for mechanics is if you don’t agree with the technician, you can just remove its battery.

Welcome to Nao, your robot teacher

Aldebaran Robotics’ Nao is participating in another education study aimed at better understanding the potential for robotics to positively affect those living with a wide range of learning disabilities. Spearheaded by Nottingham Trent University in the UK, the study will compare the engagement of classrooms using Nao against those with a standard environment. Research has shown that engagement motivates young people with learning disabilities and encourages them in their academic endeavors.

Based on a dream to create robots that helped people, Nao was the first robot to display and detect emotions. To make Nao a reality, Aldebaran Robotics turned to SOLIDWORKS. Watch how Aldebaran uses SOLIDWORKS to create and validate Nao’s design prior to production.

To learn more about Nao and to hear how fellow designers and engineers are making their concepts a reality, visit Born to Design.


Mike Fearon

Mike Fearon

Senior Manager Brand Offer Marketing, Dassault Systemes SOLIDWORKS. Video game world champion and whisky advocate. I like turtles.