Aug 22, 2016 | By Tess

Roboeve, a Beijing-based team of young engineers and industrial designers, has created what might just be one of the cutest little robots we’ve seen lately. The robot, called Xpider, is made using 3D printing technologies and offers a number of fun features, such as an integrated camera and facial recognition.

Roboeve was first founded as a way for a group of recently graduated robot enthusiasts to explore their passion. Made up of six members (Binbin, Zongyi, Tianye, Louise, Cara, and Anna), the group has successfully created a tiny spider robot that is sure to amuse just about anyone. The Xpider robot itself, which measures 85mm in height and weighs only 150 grams, is even touted by Roboeve as being the smallest programmable spider robot in the world.

The Xpider’s main feature is its integrated camera eye, which was inspired by Mike Wazowski from Monsters, Inc., and which is powered by an Intel Edison board and Curie. The robot, which can be moved around and controlled using either a smartphone or a game controller, offers its user a unique perspective on the world, especially because of its small size. Additionally, the robot can transmit its own captured perspective to your phone screen for easy viewing.

In addition to recording images, the Xpider can also understand its surroundings thanks to a powerful recognition program, SmartNode, which allows it to both recognize objects in its vicinity as well as people’s faces. The recognition features mean that you can even let the Xpider explore spaces on its own by simply setting it on “roaming mode”.

The robot can also recognize its owner. As it says on the Xpider’s website: “With my people recognition power, you can set me up on your desk and I will dance happily when I see you and alarm you when someone else approaches.” You have to admit, that is a pretty adorable feature for a robot companion to have. The Xpider can also be trained through a simple drag-and-drop neural network.

Of course, the Xpider is the result of a long development process, which was initiated a year ago in August 2015 when Roboeve set about modifying the Nerf TerraDrone (an off-the-shelf children’s toy) to include a first-person camera perspective. Since then, Roboeve has created a number of robot designs and made a number of 3D printed prototypes before arriving at the impressive and tiny Xpider.

If you’re wondering how to get your hands on the tiny 3D printed spider robot, you’re in luck, as the Beijing-based group will be launching a Kickstarter for their project later this month. It also seems as though it will be possible to access the Xpider’s 3D files and build instructions through Wevolver.



Posted in 3D Printing Application



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Arx Mechanica wrote at 8/23/2016 4:18:53 PM:

This is based on the robot toy designed by Jaimie Mantzel. His design was made into the attacknids and later into the simplified nerf version robot.

oponaut wrote at 8/22/2016 10:28:31 PM:

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