If there’s one thing that motivates me to get out of bed in the morning and try my hand at this dreary carnival called Life, it’s the thought of clocking my eyes on a freaky-looking robot I’ve never seen before. And thanks to the good folks at Suzumori Endo Robotics Laboratory in Japan, I’ve found my robot-will-to-live today: a spaghetti-limbed, slack-jawed baby I’m going to call Frank.
Now, Frank is, well, kinda useless. His big trick is a set of pneumatically-powered “multifilament’ muscles: bunches of tiny tubes filled with air that are strung from joint to joint to control his limbs. This sort of biomimicry is a novel approach to building robots (it could one day be an alternative to the heavy motors and servos we currently use), but penumatics are not particularly speedy or strong in this configuration, meaning Frank has all the fine motor control of the recently anesthetized. Still, I love him all the same, and hope he manages to get stronger soon.
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