Octobots are now a reality. Well, at least one-eighth of an octobot is now a reality. The team at the European Union's Italian-led Octopus Project is determined to make a soft-bodied robotic Octopus, and they're already one tentacle toward success. That's solid progress since we first reported on the four-year project back in 2009.
Although the notion of a robotic octopus has unlimited potential for Hollywood and epic practical joke applications, the project team is more interested in the scientific value. Turns out that's pretty cool, too.
The tentacles of an octopus can move in any direction and have the ability to go limp or stiffen on demand. That gives octopi some pretty unparalleled ambulatory abilities, and yes, makes them great nightmare fodder, too. … Read more