What's up with researchers making robots that mimic terrifying animals? MIT has already doomed us all with its cheetah bot, and now researchers in Switzerland want to finish the job with a small robot cat that will worm its way into our hearts before tearing it out.
École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne, or EPFL for short, is developing what is calls a "cheetah-cub robot." The team may call it a cheetah-cub, but the robot's design and movement is actually based on a regular house cat. The cheetah comparison comes in when it runs - it can run seven times its own body length in a second.
So, what possible use could this catbot have? EPFL explains:
"It's still in the experimental stages, but the long-term goal of the cheetah-cub robot is to be able to develop fast, agile, ground-hugging machines for use in exploration, for example for search and rescue in natural disaster situations. Studying and using the principles of the animal kingdom to develop new solutions for use in robots is the essence of our research."
There's no word yet on whether the catbot always lands on its feet when dropped. If it does, we're probably screwed when the inevitable catbot uprising occurs.[h/t: Engadget]