robots

67-year-old man singlehandedly builds giant robot, inspires/terrifies us

Sometimes when hiking in Japan, I’m surprised by the large number of senior citizens I run into. Nothing makes you feel lazy quite like huffing and puffing your way to the top of a mountain trail, only to find there’s already a relaxed silver-haired gentleman sedately snapping pictures at the top.

Of course, even these elderly outdoorsmen have nothing on Hitoshi Takahashi, who decided that once he turned 50 he was old enough to do whatever he wanted, and took steps to realize his dream… of building a giant robot.

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Do you remember giant robots? Full-scale Macross Valkyrie lands in Yokohama

The deployment of anime mecha to Yokohama continues. Earlier this month the Ingram from police story Patlabor made an appearance in the bayside city, and now comes a life-size VF-25 Valkyrie from Macross Frontier.

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Japan’s giant robot proliferation continues as filming starts on live-action Patlabor movie

Japan loves its fictional robots. The adorable Doraemon and unsettling Evangelion are instantly recognizable to both young and old. The giant statue of Gundam in Tokyo has become a major tourist attraction, despite being in the middle of Odaiba, which was already a major entertainment district with no shortage of other, hipper attractions.

And now, another robot, the Patlabor, has joined Gundam in making the leap into the three-dimensional world, towering size intact.

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Giant robot design from Mobile Suit Gundam transformed into the manliest of man bags

One of the first major adjustments I had to make after moving to Japan was making a habit of carrying a bag with me whenever I go out. Having grown up in L.A., it took me a while to overcome the notion that bags were strictly for students and people with a double set of X chromosomes, but eventually I saw the light. If you live in an urban area of Japan, you’re reliant on public transportation. Without a car and a trunk to haul stuff in, a bag is really the only way to carry anything you can’t fit in your pocket but don’t want to hold in your hand all day.

Of course, my resistance might have broken down a lot quicker if I’d known about the upcoming man bag that makes you look like a giant robot.

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Fan creates video line-up of 174 real-life, anime and video game robots… in height order

Remember those science videos they used to show at school which began with the smallest known organism and zoomed out and out until the entire solar system filled the screen? Well imagine that but with almost every robot and mecha you could ever imagine thrown in for good measure.

Uploaded to Niconico Video by user Monako, the video “I Compared the Size of 174 Robots: Microman to Gurren Lagann” is making an appropriately huge splash online today as netizens play Name that Robot while marvelling at just how enormous some of these sci-fi creations are actually supposed to be. From Doraemon and Mega Man to Optimus Prime and Macross Quarter, this is one heck of a nerdy science lesson!

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Kirobo: To cutely go where man has gone before

Meet Kirobo, the International Space Station’s newest and tiniest astronaut.

Don’t worry; we’ll wait for you to finish “Awwwwwwwwwwing.”

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Yes, Zima’s robot band will play metal and electronica, as long as you compose it for them

Zima never really took off in the U.S.. Molson Coors’ clear malt beverage never even made it out of puberty in its home market, lasting just 15 years before the last Zima made for American consumption shipped in 2008.

In Japan though, it’s been a solid hit, particularly at clubs. The company recently asked the lofty question of whether the way human beings party is advancing at the same rate of other aspects of our modern lifestyle, and has decided to give it an evolutionary kick in the backside by creating a robot party band.

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Karakuri dolls: The robots of premodern Japan

For many, Japan equals technology and robots, and we can hardly blame them! Between Honda’s Asimov and Professor Hiroshi Ishiguro’s android, there’s no shortage of exciting robotics news coming out of Japan.

Today, however, we’re going to show you something equally amazing… but hardly new at all.

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Baby’s First Warmachine: the Perfect Mech for Your Tiny Supervillians!

As with most weeks in Japan, robots seem to be dominating the news, but this one’s much cuter and waaaay more alarming.

Sakakibara Kikai (or Sakakibara Machines), a well established manufacturing company in Gunma Prefecture, has released a video of their KID’S WALKER CYCLOPS out for a test drive. (No buildings were destroyed by errant missiles in the filming of this video.) Read More

Tokyo Robot Can Think, Learn, and Apply Knowledge: Nothing to Fear Here!

It seems every time a news story about robots appears, someone inevitably freaks out, screaming about Skynet or the Matrix. Well, this time, they might be right!

While it lacks the dexterity and sweetness of other robots, this one can not only assess and comprehend its surroundings but also learn through the Internet! (Oh, please keep it away from Wikipedia. It’ll conquer the world in a month.) Read More

SECOM Unveils World’s First Flying Crime-prevention Robot


With shades of Minority Report, Japanese security services company SECOM unveiled an autonomous flying crime-prevention robot to the press on December 26. Basically a flying surveillance camera, the robot is the first of its kind in the world to be offered for private security use. Shuji Maeda, SECOM’s president, said he hoped to make the device available in 2014.
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Transformers Are Real and You Will Want One

Maker Faire is an event that gives people a chance to showcase their DIY projects and emphasizes the importance of being creators and innovators rather than just consumers.

As you might imagine, when the event came to tech-savvy Japan on Dec 1st and 2nd, there was some serious gadgetry on display, including a fully functional Transformer robot from Brave Robotics. Read More

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