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Termite-Inspired Robots Build With Bricks

samzenpus posted about a year ago | from the build-it-small dept.

Robotics 17

sciencehabit writes "A termite mound is a model of insect engineering. Some are meters high and consist of a complex network of tunnels. Even more impressive, millions of the bugs work together to build the mound, all without a blueprint or foreman telling them what to do. Could robots do the same? That's a question that has now been tackled by Justin Werfel, a computer scientist at Harvard University Today, he and his colleagues introduced a computer program that figures out how autonomous robots can make specific structures, including small-scale skyscrapers and pyramids, simply by following the same set of rules. The researchers started small, tasking three compact robots, or bots, with making a one-story, three-pronged structure all on their own, a job they completed in 30 minutes."

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Bots is Short for Robots (-1, Troll)

sexconker (1179573) | about a year ago | (#46242473)

The researchers started small, tasking three compact robots, or bots

Slashdot. News for Nerds. Stuff that Matters.


Re: Bots is Short for Robots (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#46242487)

...from someone who called 'sexconker'. LOL

So... (1)

msauve (701917) | about a year ago | (#46242475)

Is "Harvard University Today" like "Harvard 2.0?"

Re:So... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#46242723)

If you've read the summary, which we assumed you'd had, it sounds like plenty bullshit. It brings to mind a Calvin and Hobbes comic:

" Dusk! With a creepy, tingling sensation, you hear the fluttering of leathery wings! Bats! With glowing red eyes and glistening fangs, these unspeakable giant bugs drop onto..."

Homosexual transexual small-but-vocal minority of politically incorrect butch-dykes: " Slashdot Beta isn't bad ! Mommy, this guy is picking on me! Ban him and remove his ability to speak! I want to make you money because my homo friends love clicking on ads! "

Look -- who's giving the report, you chowderheads or me?!

-- Ethanol-fueled

It's just a model (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#46242505)

Oh, so they programmed Conway's Game of Life?

Assembly line jobs are Really in jeopardy! (3, Informative)

rmdingler (1955220) | about a year ago | (#46242569)

Pretty interesting linked video for those not averse to a perusing of the article.

Are you three guys here or on strike this week?

Re:Assembly line jobs are Really in jeopardy! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#46242591)

Maybe Dice.com can replace the "editors" with robots, or bots for short, and just ditch the beta site. The overall quality of the site would vastly improve.

Re:Assembly line jobs are Really in jeopardy! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#46242887)

With all the hubbaloo going on lately, it is clear that Slashdot could have been bought out by a respectable company like Microsoft.

That in mind, I want some National Socialism. [youtube.com] Panzer Rollen in Amerika vor!

-- Ethanol-fueled

Re:Assembly line jobs are Really in jeopardy! (1)

mcgrew (92797) | about a year ago | (#46247643)

Are you three guys here or on strike this week?

There are a lot more than three, someone started building an alternate slashdot, which was immediately slashdotted. I was one of the protesters, have changed my mind; as long as classic is here, I'm here. Why I'm not joining the slashcott [slashdot.org] .

I am keeping an eye on the alternate site, because Dice seems to want to attract the kind of people I hate reading comments from -- barely literate luddites who hate science and can't tell their from there from they're or lose from loose. I'm already starting to get sick of reading comments in a NASA thread about how that tax money is all wasted, about how climate change is a hoax to make scientists rich, and the awfully offensive "Pshaw, first world problems."

However, even if I stop reading comments in front page stories I'll still be reading and writing journals. Oddly, lately that's where you find the best comments, in user journals.

No "engineering" is Involved (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#46242589)

A termite mound is not "a model of insect engineering". It may be a model of insect construction, for some value of "model", but termites no more do engineering than they do theoretical computing science. Engineering is a purposeful activity in its own right; it is not simply an artifact of construction.

How long before a Republican says... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#46242817)

Their taken our jerbs? They are so ignorant. Making buildings cheaper and faster to build will help mankind which is why they are so opposed to it.

Sure, little robots can push those bricks around (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#46242999)

But they'll never be able to do something that requires deep intelligence, like cutting some clean Node.js code.

I read this as "thermite" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#46243597)

And was immediately disappointed.

Looks a lot like StarLogo (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#46243701)

Looks like the StarLogo system (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/StarLogo), but with physical "turtles." Even the termite comparison is one I remember used fairly often in the StarLogo programs I used to play around with.

Don't fall into their trap! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#46243969)

It's only a matter of time until these little buggers wipe us out! http://www.technovelgy.com/graphics/content08/stargate-replicator.jpg

Bot Spray Next? (1)

agrisea (877522) | about a year ago | (#46245041)

So bots will build things and when they go out of control (like they always do in stories) who has made the "knock em dead" bot spray?
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