Drones Work Together to Open a Door

AlphaAtlas

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Researchers at Stanford university built tiny drones that can work together to manipulate objects that are 40 times their own mass. The researchers say they mimicked the behavior of wasps, which drag large prey back to their nests along the ground instead of carrying it through the air.

Check out a preview of our impending doom here.

As impressive as this all sounds, the FlyCroTug drones still face serious limitations. Their current battery life is sufficient for just five minutes of flight time, which severely limits what they can do. Complex and unknown environments would also require possibly many versions of the drones with different attachments and anchor mechanisms for various surfaces. But the latter may not be a problem, if such flying robots could be made cheaply and be deployed as swarms of disposable drones. Researchers have not yet developed either sensing capabilities or artificial intelligence capabilities for such drones to operate even semi-independently, let alone in fully autonomous mode without human control. But Estrada believes that a teleoperation approach makes the most sense for near-future deployments of such technology. "Humans can intuitively read a room and predict what surfaces might be suitable to attach onto and [find] feasible paths towards these locations," Estrada says. "This could certainly be combined with some low-level autonomy for maneuvers such as holding a position or grappling a handle."
 

Darunion

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Maybe drones will look and hold a door open for someone right behind them?
 

The Mad Atheist

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Looks like we're a few years safe from our robo-lords reach, only good this is, is when you're cornered and nowhere left to run.
 

natos

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OH GAWD, THEY'RE GONNA KILL US ALL!! THE ROBOTS ARE COMING FOR US!! LOL
 

AngeloBJ

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That's pretty impressive! All I can do with mine is crash it into the neighbors car or get it stuck in a tree. Oh, I can land it on the roof as the battery runs out too.
 

Darunion

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That's pretty impressive! All I can do with mine is crash it into the neighbors car or get it stuck in a tree. Oh, I can land it on the roof as the battery runs out too.

I learned mine was not waterproof. Still have a motor at the bottom of my friends pond. The esc caught on fire, was a rough day that day.
 

Wiffle

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I would have been 100% more impressed if these were actually being flown by some type of AI.

They spliced the videos together about 1:13, probably to edit out all their multiple failures, grabbing that handle with a moving claw is a lot harder than people think. Good crane operators make their job look easy.

I think the multiple trial and errors with the subsequent cheering and applause when they succeeded would have been much more enjoyable to watch.

Still a very nice proof of concept.

I can see some military general getting all hard for something like this. The 3rd drone carries a grenade. No soldiers have to enter a building. A scary concept indeed.
 

Darunion

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I would have been 100% more impressed if these were actually being flown by some type of AI.

They spliced the videos together about 1:13, probably to edit out all their multiple failures, grabbing that handle with a moving claw is a lot harder than people think. Good crane operators make their job look easy.

I think the multiple trial and errors with the subsequent cheering and applause when they succeeded would have been much more enjoyable to watch.

Still a very nice proof of concept.

I can see some military general getting all hard for something like this. The 3rd drone carries a grenade. No soldiers have to enter a building. A scary concept indeed.

It only has pull strength because it can anchor to the floor and let its winch do the work. Carrying a grenade would require probably at least a 450-550 sized quadcopter, and it would be slow, but that could be done with current products even, the tricky part is it wouldn't be very sneaky.
 

Loop242

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I more impressed with the technique the drones used to open the door.

But the video was like
NeglectedShoddyFantail-size_restricted.gif
 

Galvin

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Well we have dog bots that can open doors already. So you're already not safe :)
 

AngeloBJ

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I'm just wondering why that door didn't have a wheelchair button if it was at a university...and why the drones didn't just push it!
 

xorbe

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Now do the same thing with robots that don't stop flying. Because they didn't really need flying robots to do that, except it made grabbing the door handle a bit easier.
 

Wiffle

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It only has pull strength because it can anchor to the floor and let its winch do the work. Carrying a grenade would require probably at least a 450-550 sized quadcopter, and it would be slow, but that could be done with current products even, the tricky part is it wouldn't be very sneaky.

It doesn't have to be sneaky. In fact its probably better that it isn't sneaky. If enemies decide its better evacuate a building because they hear anti-personnel drones buzzing around... well I would consider that mission accomplished with minimal loss of resources.

The real scary part is, drones are cheap. You wouldn't just send in one squad of 3 drones... you park outside with 50 on board ready to go. With mass production going on things like this, I am sure you could pump out 20$ suicide drones... which at 20$ would be significantly cheaper than the ammo and equipment a soldier would carry. Hell, even current market prices are cheaper than equipping a soldier. Only issue I see is with ethics... Ive never considered killing anyone or anything to be an ethical answer to any situation. I figure, if you have to kill something, ethics have already gone out the window. Many people disagree with that sentiment though, that's why people will continue to lose their lives fighting wars they may not agree with or even understand. Precision is key though... innocent bystanders don't need to get caught up in the crossfire. Drones offer up a lot more precision than a missile strike.

Personally, I think the world should switch over towards 100% robotic warfare. Nobody needs to die, we just smash up some constructs and see who's side has the maddest skillz!
 

lostin3d

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All we need now is a vid of them and those dog robots, jumping robots, running robots, working together to take over throw a small country. Oh, the good times to be had. My overlords I hope you notice I'm already bowing to you.
 

Darunion

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It doesn't have to be sneaky. In fact its probably better that it isn't sneaky. If enemies decide its better evacuate a building because they hear anti-personnel drones buzzing around... well I would consider that mission accomplished with minimal loss of resources.

The real scary part is, drones are cheap. You wouldn't just send in one squad of 3 drones... you park outside with 50 on board ready to go. With mass production going on things like this, I am sure you could pump out 20$ suicide drones... which at 20$ would be significantly cheaper than the ammo and equipment a soldier would carry. Hell, even current market prices are cheaper than equipping a soldier. Only issue I see is with ethics... Ive never considered killing anyone or anything to be an ethical answer to any situation. I figure, if you have to kill something, ethics have already gone out the window. Many people disagree with that sentiment though, that's why people will continue to lose their lives fighting wars they may not agree with or even understand. Precision is key though... innocent bystanders don't need to get caught up in the crossfire. Drones offer up a lot more precision than a missile strike.

Personally, I think the world should switch over towards 100% robotic warfare. Nobody needs to die, we just smash up some constructs and see who's side has the maddest skillz!

If there is no loss of life, there is no win or lose. War would become even more political and even business related if all it is is a video game. Then eventually civilians become the targets to create the loss needed to 'win'.
 
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