VIDEO: Flying Robots Play the James Bond Theme Song

Posted by · March 1, 2012 8:23 am

I’m a sucker for a good flying robot.  I mean, who isn’t? (Wow. That is something I never thought I’d say. What has working at Experts Exchange done to me!?) Lucky for me, there is no shortage of aerodynamically inclined machines at the TED conference this week.  First, DARPA Director Regina Dugan showed the audience the association’s flying hummingbird (by far the cutest robot I’ve seen) then Vijay Kumar, a professor at the University of Pennsylvania, showed off the “Quadrotor” robots that he and his colleagues built.

The Quadrotors fly extremely fast while still being able to sense their surroundings, avoid obstacles, right themselves if they fall over and carry and deposit things. But possibly most impressive is the fact that the robots can work together with decentralized control. They take cues from their local surroundings but are able to act independently of their robotic neighbors. Kumar said he thinks these robots will aid in the fields of search and rescue and construction in the future.

During his TEDTalk yesterday, Kumar showed a video of the robots playing the James Bond theme song. The audience gave the Quadrotor’s performance a standing ovation. I think you’ll see why: