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Open Source Robotics

DARPA (1Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency) has opened up the next phase of their robotics challenge, dubbed the “Virtual Robotics Challenge”. This challenge is open to “anyone with the skills to develop the software needed to advance core robotic software capabilities” and is executed using an online registration system and robotics simulation software. This contest is DARPA’s latest effort to develop robots that can assist humans in disasters and emergency response scenarios. The concept behind the open source/cloud based program, called the DRC Simulator, is to allow individuals with the know-how, but not the hardware, to compete and diversify the field of robotics development. The first step to great development is opening up the code to all kinds of people. It’ll be great to see what the people behind the “cheetah” robot can do with open source robotics.
This video shows a demonstration of the “Cheetah” robot galloping at speeds of up to 18 miles per hour (1mph), setting a new land speed record for legged robots. The previous record was 13.1 mph, set in 1989.

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