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Idle

Submission + - Lightsaber + Kinect + robotic arm = JediBot (extremetech.com)

An anonymous reader writes: By combining a dexterous robotic arm, a foam-padded lightsaber, the movement tracking capabilities of Microsoft’s Kinect sensor, and some clever software, students at Stanford University have created what can only be called a JediBot. Using a series of pre-programmed "attack moves", and Kinect to detect the location of the enemy's light saber, JediBot can attack and defend with surprising grace. For now its attack moves are fairly slow — it can only attack once every 2 or 3 seconds — but presumably you could tweak a knob (and remove the foam padding) to turn JediBot into a real killing machine.
Space

United Nations Names Ambassador To Aliens 306

Shag writes "Although searches for extraterrestrial intelligence have thus far come up empty-handed, the United Nations appears to be preparing for eventual 'first contact.' Many media outlets are carrying the story that Mazlan Othman, a Malaysian astrophysicist who heads the UN's Office for Outer Space Affairs in Vienna — already charged with things like keeping track of satellites to prevent Kessler Syndrome and coordinating the international response to any earth-impacting asteroids — will be the first person to meet with aliens if they do show up." Update: 09/27 16:42 GMT by S : Looks like this one's too good to be true — in an email to The Guardian, Othman said, "It sounds really cool but I have to deny it."

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