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MIT scientists created a working hydraulic robot from a single 3D print

We’re getting to the point we’re 3D printing is slowly becoming useful. Earlier this week, Stratasys, the largest 3D printer manufacturer,showed off new technology that can print full objects in one go, without any assembly required. 

Today (April 6), researchers at MIT’s CSAIL computer science lab announced that they can print working robots on one 3D printer, from a single print. The robots, which need to be hooked up to a battery source, are made up of solid and liquid parts, which could have big implications on how we design robots to interact with humans in the future.

The lab’s printer can print eight different materials at once, allowing it to create liquid-filled tubes that can be used to actuate robots’ joints. The different heads can emit solids, while others lay down liquids. Using special UV lights that cure the solid materials as they print—but leaving the liquids alone—the printer can accurately print complex structures with varied physical properties. A video produced by MIT shows a hydraulic valve that it built to pump liquids, as well as a roughly six-pound robot with complicated moving parts.

“Our approach, which we call ‘Printable Hydraulics,’ is a step towards the rapid fabrication of functional machines,” said Daniela Rus, lab director, and member of the new billion-dollar Toyota robotics research lab, in a release. “All you have to do is stick in a battery and motor, and you have a robot that can practically walk right out of the printer.”

The lab’s robot has built-in “bellows” that were printed inside it which use fluid pressure that enables it to move. MIT also showed that it could use this same concept to make soft, grippy hands for robots, which it installed on a Baxter robot, produced by Rethink Robotics. Using the liquid-filled fingers, the bot was able to deftly pick up an egg without damaging it.

While MIT and others have been working on robots that won’t crush us if we interact with them, the process to create them hasn’t been this easy previously. Obviously, MIT’s little six-legged robot isn’t quite as complex as C-3PO, or even a Roomba, but it does hint at one potential future of robotics: We’re approaching the point where we could print a robot that we could safely use in our homes.

Hopefully, however, if robots ever take over, they won’t realize that they can now easily print off fully functional versions of themselves on MIT’s new machine. Otherwise this lab in Massachusetts has likely doomed us all.

Source: http://qz.com/655504/mit-scientists-created-a-working-hydraulic-robot-from-a-single-3d-print/

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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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