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back to article Watch the MIT MER-BOT – half droid, half soft 'fish' – swim by itself

Researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have constructed a fish-like robot which they say will be more durable and safe for everyday use. Based on "soft" robotics technologies, the unit combines a computational system and power supply with a movement system based on a compressed gas pump and a series of tubes …

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Can a head mounted laser be far behind?

See title.

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Re: Can a head mounted laser be far behind?

Definitely not far. It can now execute the "evasive action after successful attack" maneuvre.

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Re: Can a head mounted laser be far behind?

Haven't a bit of trouble stabilizing the laser on target yet. The fishy motion is throwing the targeting scanners off a bit.

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" ... the robots could be embedded with schools of fish ..."

Wouldn't the other fish think it was a bit .... fishy?

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100ms escape maneouvre

What is it escaping from? A soft predator?

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stupid...

can't see it getting very far as they make no attempt to capture the "waste" stream from the "motor" and recompress it again. Should be a closed system pumping the gas from one side to the other.

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Re: stupid...

s/stupid/early days/

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Unhappy

Firefox: "Error #2035"

Firefox (v27.0.1) - I get "Error #2035" instead of the video. I have Adobe flash player v12.0.0.55. This error seems to be "URL not found", though the video does play if I use MSIE.

Anyone else suffering this with Firefox?

Anyone know a solution (that doesn't involve using a different browser)?

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Re: Firefox: "Error #2035"

Video works fine on Firefox 27.0.1 here. Check that you don't have multiple instances of flash installed (or that it's outdated and has been disabled by Firefox).

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Firefox: "Error #2035"

Disable https everywhere

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Firefox: "Error #2035"

I get this too

Disabling https everywhere sorts it

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Re: Firefox: "Error #2035"

Running any script blocker add-ons? I get something similar (can not load plug in) with NoScript when playing some content, just allow temporary access and it works fine, does reload the page though.

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Business idea: new type of lure.

As subject.

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Vic
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No use for investigating other fish

As it stands, that robot is useless for watching other fish - it bubbles every time it moves.

Fish react very badly to air bubbles - dolphins use that reaction to shepherd prey into large balls where they can catch them more easily.

For this to be any use in ichthyology, the power source needs redeveloping. It remains to be seen whether or not similar performance can be created using something else.

Still - an interesting piece of work.

Vic.

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Re: No use for investigating other fish

I was about to mention the same thing. I think that they should start experimenting with a pump, fluidics and a real fluid like water instead of air.

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Re: No use for investigating other fish

Both gas and liquids are fluids. Think you are referring to the use of hydraulics.

Obvious that the use of compressed gas is only suitable for the demonstration phase of this idea and it's to save on the complexity of having a pump/actuator and a larger energy source, valves don't use as much.

They're obviously also going to need to sort buoyancy and attitude control for any 'real use' situation.

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Altitude?

Makes me wonder how is the thing moving vertically.

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Re: Altitude?

Look closely, it's hanging on a string.

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"...to function with and around humans..."

So, how well does it do out of water?

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Sloppy reporting!

"...they say will be more durable" than what?

The article on the MIT site does not mention durability!

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Sloppy reading!

"Designed to be more flexible and durable than traditional rigidly-built robot systems"

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Anonymous Coward

Biology

> the robots could be embedded with schools of fish to study marine biology and behaviors.

In this scenario, be interesting to see the actual fish trying to copulate with the machine.

...or vice-versa.

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FAIL

@ AC ~2200h GMT - Re: Biology

Biology wasn't your strongest subject in school, was it?

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Meh Re: Biology

Didn't you pay attention when you watched Futurama?

Just ask Fry about Lucy Liu ... ;-)

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Re: Meh Biology

"I don't want to go out and earn money, I want to stay at home and make out with my fish-bot" doesn't quite have the same ring to it as the marylin monroe bot...

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Makes harpooning one more rewarding

Fed up of the hard bodied fish robots getting away every time...try a c manoeuvre escape from that one, matey. But what wrong with an ordinary electrical actuator used in every other fish robot...sometimes engineers over think.

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Linux

Meh. Fish and chips,

but inedible.

Throw it back.

Let the penguins have it.

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Re: Meh. Fish and chips,

You mean like Festo's 2009 robotic swimming and flying penguins?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L5JHMpLIqO4

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Happy

Has to be said...

"Unleash the robot turbot."

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Terminator

I can't believe no-one has said it...

I for one welcome our pliant piscis overlords.

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Re: I can't believe no-one has said it...

...which can be fixed with pliers?

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Missed a trick.

They could have made the gas vent backwards to give extra forward propulsion. Unless they were worried that if they did this it would look more rocket-propelled than fin-propelled.

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