bots IN BRIEF
NEW NAVY SWEEPERS
You’re looking at the Navy’s newest recruits:
(from left to right) CS3 Scooba Stevens, Chief Miles
O’Brien, and ITSN Unger. No joke. That’s what they’ve
been named. The iRobot Scooba and Roombas are just
part of an entire assemblage of robots who clean the
floors on the USS Freedom, one of the newest and most
expensive warships in the Navy.
Apparently, the robots are generally free to roam
around the ship on their own. Crew members still have
to do some sweeping, but the robots help keep things
tidy on a day-to-day basis. Give it a couple years or
maybe a decade, and the robots will be running the ship
while humans do the sweeping.
GET IT IN GEAR
Developed by an educator, GEARS EDS hands-on
engineering products are widely used from middle school
through college and beyond. Their extensive curriculum
delivers S.T.E.M. educational resources to aid teachers, and
engage and inspire students. The website describes and
illustrates The GEARS Invention and Design System™
which gives teachers the industrial strength tools they
need to create world-class engineering and robotics
challenges for their students in the comfort and
convenience of their own classrooms.Videos of the
system in use can be viewed and eight example projects
that can be built with GEARS-IDS are explained.
An Education Tab on the site offers a full Curriculum
Section, as well as Flash Programs demonstrating principles
in various disciplines. Sample curriculum and lessons for
the mechatronics kits Totally Trebuchet, The Pneumatics
Trainer, and The Transmission Module can be downloaded
Three different robotics levels offer programs for the
novice through the graduate student. Electronic, pneumatic,
and mechanical accessories each have their own sections,
as well as gear head motors, batteries, and chargers. Users
are encouraged to integrate their own sourced, fabricated, or salvaged components with GEARS products.
Useful links offer users directions to many other educational sites, as well as to GEARS partners.
Be sure to visit the easy-to-navigate site at www.gearseds.com.
Cool tidbits and interesting info herein mainly provided by Evan Ackerman at www.botjunkie.com, but also www.robotsnob.com and other places.
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