Cubes are relatively stationary objects. You can throw them around, sure, but it’s hard to see them as being autonomous. One robotics lab did just that, however, with its newest invention.
Robohub reports that the Institute for Dynamic Systems and Control at ETH Zurich have created Cubli, a robotic cube that can walk, jump and balance on its corners. The most amazing part is that the cube is built out of nothing but off-the-shelf motors, batteries and electronic components.
You can see Cubli below balancing on its corner through the use of spinning flywheels that maintain its balance, even when slightly nudged:
So, what’s next for the Cubli? The researchers are already working on a version of Cubli that can walk on flat surfaces, or jump. It can already do these things, but it was found that some internal components were damaged when it jumps. These flaws have been mostly fixed, and now the team is working on “controlled maneuvers of jumping up, balancing, and falling over to make the Cubli walk across a surface.”[h/t: Gizmodo]