"The best way I know to demonstrate how effective a team can be and demonstrate it really quickly compared to business situations when projects sometimes take years or decades, is to watch what happens when the first competition gets going. This year we have over 2,000 different high school teams around the world that get six weeks to take a problem statement -- and in this place build a robot that plays soccer -- and take that problem and deliver." -- Dean Kamen
Dean Kamen is the Founder of FIRST and President of DEKA Research & Development Corporation based in Manchester, NH. DEKA is a dynamic company focused on the development of revolutionary new technologies that span a diverse set of applications. As an inventor, physicist, and entrepreneur, Dean has dedicated his life to developing technologies that help people lead better lives.
A young hacker has built a mini Arduino-controlled self-balancing robot that looks for all the world like a mini Segway. It's remote-controlled by a WiiMote, it's cheap, and the chap in question is just 17 years old. That all-robotic future gets nearer every day.
What if you could wire up your nervous system to a robotic hand so well that it actually felt like your own? Would you be a real-life cyborg or Six Million Dollar Man? Yup. It's not only the future of prosthetic limbs. It's the present. It was done last year.
The Segway hasn't been the runaway hit that inventor Dean Kamen hoped--only 50,000 have been sold in seven years--but that doesn't mean there isn't room for a little healthy competition. The Orbis, a one-wheeled self-balancing urban mobility vehicle, uses gyroscopes (like the Segway) to stay upright and generates power from a lithium ion battery and internal hub motor.