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Robot with a 'textured hand' can detect more than 100 different materials with just a fingertip

Researchers have developed a robot finger that is more sensitive to touch than the human hand.

The BioTac sensor was able to identify a randomly selected material 95 per cent of the time, which is a higher hit rate than a human would achieve.

It achieved the feat thanks to a fingerprint on it’s ‘skin’ which gave it more sensitivity to vibration than previous such machines.

It also has a soft coating similar to human tissue which is filled with a special liquid.

Even the mechanism by which is works is the same - including a ‘bone-like core’ at the middle of it all.

Inside is a tiny microphone called a hydrophone which is usually used to detect noises underwater, only here it picks up vibrations.

The finger has been developed by researchers at the University of California’s Viterbi School of Engineering.

Professor of Biomedical Engineering Gerald Loeb and doctoral student Jeremy Fishel said it could one say be used for prosthetic limbs, or for advanced robots.

Along with the main sensor, the finger also has features which allow it to monitor direction and temperature.


Professor Loeb said: ‘The problem we’ve been asking is, how do you judge textures, and can you get a robot to do the same thing?

‘If you have ever had your fingers so numb from the cold that you couldn’t feel things, your hands are almost useless, if you can’t feel what you’re touching, it slips, you can’t do things, it’s as if you’re paralysed.

‘By adding tactile sensing to prosthetic hands you can overcome that problem.’

The technology is the latest example of robots attempting to carry out tasks thought to be so complex they could only be undertaken by a human.

Japanese researchers have developed a robot that can perform functions it was not programmed to do by using past experience and knowledge to make an educated guess.

The SOINN (Self-Organizing Incremental Neural Network) technology, from the Tokyo Institute of Technology, is expected to learn like a child over time.

Scientists at Tel Aviv University's Blavatnik School of Computer Science have also taught PCs how to feel ‘regret’ so they make better choices the next time around.


Source: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2161678/Robot-textured-hand-detect-100-different-materials-just-fingertip--accuracy-better-man.html?ito=feeds-newsxml

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Founded by Russian entrepreneur Dmitry Itskov in February 2011 with the participation of leading Russian specialists in the field of neural interfaces, robotics, artificial organs and systems.

The main goals of the 2045 Initiative: the creation and realization of a new strategy for the development of humanity which meets global civilization challenges; the creation of optimale conditions promoting the spiritual enlightenment of humanity; and the realization of a new futuristic reality based on 5 principles: high spirituality, high culture, high ethics, high science and high technologies. 

The main science mega-project of the 2045 Initiative aims to create technologies enabling the transfer of a individual’s personality to a more advanced non-biological carrier, and extending life, including to the point of immortality. We devote particular attention to enabling the fullest possible dialogue between the world’s major spiritual traditions, science and society.

A large-scale transformation of humanity, comparable to some of the major spiritual and sci-tech revolutions in history, will require a new strategy. We believe this to be necessary to overcome existing crises, which threaten our planetary habitat and the continued existence of humanity as a species. With the 2045 Initiative, we hope to realize a new strategy for humanity's development, and in so doing, create a more productive, fulfilling, and satisfying future.

The "2045" team is working towards creating an international research center where leading scientists will be engaged in research and development in the fields of anthropomorphic robotics, living systems modeling and brain and consciousness modeling with the goal of transferring one’s individual consciousness to an artificial carrier and achieving cybernetic immortality.

An annual congress "The Global Future 2045" is organized by the Initiative to give platform for discussing mankind's evolutionary strategy based on technologies of cybernetic immortality as well as the possible impact of such technologies on global society, politics and economies of the future.


Future prospects of "2045" Initiative for society


The emergence and widespread use of affordable android "avatars" controlled by a "brain-computer" interface. Coupled with related technologies “avatars’ will give people a number of new features: ability to work in dangerous environments, perform rescue operations, travel in extreme situations etc.
Avatar components will be used in medicine for the rehabilitation of fully or partially disabled patients giving them prosthetic limbs or recover lost senses.


Creation of an autonomous life-support system for the human brain linked to a robot, ‘avatar’, will save people whose body is completely worn out or irreversibly damaged. Any patient with an intact brain will be able to return to a fully functioning  bodily life. Such technologies will  greatly enlarge  the possibility of hybrid bio-electronic devices, thus creating a new IT revolution and will make  all  kinds of superimpositions of electronic and biological systems possible.


Creation of a computer model of the brain and human consciousness  with the subsequent development of means to transfer individual consciousness  onto an artificial carrier. This development will profoundly change the world, it will not only give everyone the possibility of  cybernetic immortality but will also create a friendly artificial intelligence,  expand human capabilities  and provide opportunities for ordinary people to restore or modify their own brain multiple times.  The final result  at this stage can be a real revolution in the understanding of human nature that will completely change the human and technical prospects for humanity.


This is the time when substance-independent minds will receive new bodies with capacities far exceeding those of ordinary humans. A new era for humanity will arrive!  Changes will occur in all spheres of human activity – energy generation, transportation, politics, medicine, psychology, sciences, and so on.

Today it is hard to imagine a future when bodies consisting of nanorobots  will become affordable  and capable of taking any form. It is also hard to imagine body holograms featuring controlled matter. One thing is clear however:  humanity, for the first time in its history, will make a fully managed evolutionary transition and eventually become a new species. Moreover,  prerequisites for a large-scale  expansion into outer space will be created as well.


Key elements of the project in the future

• International social movement
• social network immortal.me
• charitable foundation "Global Future 2045" (Foundation 2045)
• scientific research centre "Immortality"
• business incubator
• University of "Immortality"
• annual award for contribution to the realization of  the project of "Immortality”.

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