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Where there’s life

Posted by putsimply on 6th February 2009

I can’t believe just how little new news there has been about this week. There’s been a bit of snow in the UK but that’s local news, there’s still a recession on – that’s old news. HP isn’t shipping Linux with its new toys, that’s of no real consequence – buy a Mac if you don’t like Windows. Even poor old Jeremy Clarkson’s up for abuse again, yes news is slow.

I’ve even resorted to what’s going on Twitter and that’s quiet today too so I’ll comment about something I experienced last week at a knowledge transfer event, on autonomy. We’re an inventive lot in the UK and although it was a long day of hurried presentations, punctuated by a lot of coffee and government-sponsored lunch, I got a useful glimpse of what some great technical minds are constructing – each with a simple aim of providing systems to take the danger or drudgery out of modern life.

Artificial limbs with pneumatic muscles to make a human hand (that grips properly) for deployment on space robots, vision systems which can remove shadows from live video streams, portable robotic arms which can navigate complex structures, snake-like, just like the thing in the basement in latest War of The Worlds film, but smaller if you want. All commercial, all now.

UKPLC may not be doing great right now but it’s very nice to see a spark still in there.